just cost me $220 yesterday, but didn’t buy me anything to enjoy because it was a speeding ticket!
Two months ago I was pulled over on my way to work after dropping off my daughter at day care. The officer asked if I had any idea how fast I was traveling and I said no. In fact, I never really paid attention to the speed limit on that road, though I have been living around that area for nearly four years. It’s a local road near residential area, so the limit couldn’t be high. The officer then told me my speed was 51 mph and the limit is 35. 51? I knew I was speeding but was I really that fast? But why exactly 16 miles over the limit? I didn’t dispute and didn’t ask for the radar readings (I don’t know if I could).
In the past ten years, I didn’t have any accident except once I was hit by a guy on my left trying to make a right turn, but that was my fourth speeding ticket. I guess I always tend to drive a faster, but to some extent, who doesn’t speed? How many people actually follow the posted speed limit?
Anyway, after postponing the court appearance twice, I eventually decided to go yesterday to see my chance of getting the case dropped or downgraded. Outside the court room, I found the officer’s name appeared as witness on a long list of cases and after meeting him in the hallway, I knew I can’t expect a no-show. The best chance for me, thus, was to try to get the charge reduced. With my last ticket three years ago, I played the delay game three times and when I called to get another extension, I was told over the phone I didn’t have to come if I agreed to double the fine and they could reduce the charge from speeding to a less severe reckless driving with no point.
The talk with the prosecutor didn’t last long and he agreed to amend the charge to a 14-mile over the limit instead of 16, but that’s still worth 2 points! He said he can remove the points if there were only two (0 to 14 miles over the limit), but couldn’t go from 4 to zero. Fine!
So what did this costly ticket teach me? First, don’t speed. It could put people in danger. Next, if I do need to go a little faster for various reasons, don’t exceed the limit more than 14 miles.
BTW, here’s an article on LifeHacker on how to beat a speeding ticket. I read it but didn’t beat it, :((.
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