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Old 11-23-2009, 10:10 PM
 
15 posts, read 65,236 times
Reputation: 14

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I got pulled over by a state trooper for speeding this weekend, I was doing 85 in a 65 mph zone. I talked to a retired police officer from California about it, he said that I should write a letter to the district judge or attorney or something, and explaining my situation (I'm from another country and not very used to driving here, I have a clean record untill now, and other things worth mentioning) and agree to plea guilty if I get a reduced sentence.

A friend of mine said I should appear in court instead. What is most likely to work, a letter or to meet there personally?

It is okay for me to pay the fee, but I really want to be able to get a green card and come back and work in this country in a couple of years. Will this speeding affect my chances of getting a green card later? I have no criminal record here or from back in my home country.
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Old 11-24-2009, 07:53 AM
 
237 posts, read 997,423 times
Reputation: 160
Go to court. I got one on the Northway, by Clifton Park. It must have been my lucky night because they were very busy and let me off the hook for $100 and no points. I think they reduced it to some sort of a parking ticket.

I went to the DMV to get a copy of my driving abstract which showed no prior offenses. It costs $10 but well worth it if the judge didn't have your driving history handy. Plus it shows you put in some effort and reminds them this is your first offense, if this is the case for you.

20 miles over is quite a bit of points on your driving record, so you really should try your best to get that reduced. The judge has heard all the excuses, so there's no point trying to make up a reason why. If you don't have prior violations, they are usually pretty nice. Cross your fingers and hope for the best.

When I was in court, they also told me that they now have like a $75 surcharge on top of ticket fines if you were stopped by a state trooper, but it doesn't apply to parking tickets. Don't quote me on that as it was a little while ago. So, just check the box to go to court and send in your ticket. They'll send you a day and time to go to traffic court.

Good luck!
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Old 11-30-2009, 01:13 PM
 
5,720 posts, read 5,980,619 times
Reputation: 3616
If you can afford a lawyer, get a lawyer. If not, continue delaying the hearing. If the cop doesn't show up they have to drop the charges. No matter what, you should plead not guilty. If they don't drop charges completely, they will usually at least charge you with a lesser crime.
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Old 11-30-2009, 03:51 PM
 
Location: Wilmington, NC
431 posts, read 1,072,088 times
Reputation: 143
I understand people not wanting to pay the tickets, but if you know you were speeding and you got caught, just pay it. I got pulled over on I-88 a couple years ago doing 15 over. The cop reduced it to driving without a seat belt (he felt bad because I was hysterical), I paid it and went on with it.
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Old 12-01-2009, 04:57 PM
 
237 posts, read 997,423 times
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Quote:
I understand people not wanting to pay the tickets, but if you know you were speeding and you got caught, just pay it. I got pulled over on I-88 a couple years ago doing 15 over. The cop reduced it to driving without a seat belt (he felt bad because I was hysterical), I paid it and went on with it.
If the cop him/herself reduced it to driving without a seatbelt, I'd take that in a heartbeat as well. It's different because it's a non-moving violation. Probably no points or very low points. Once you're written for a speeding ticket, it's in your best interest to go to court. Especially if it's a first time offense. The points will kill your insurance rates. Going to traffic court is not a big deal. Lots of people are there. Even ran into a friend there. It's worth the time to try to do something about it.

The fine for the ticket is one thing, but the points on your insurance is the gift that keeps on giving. Year after year, you end up paying higher premiums, until it falls off your record. But people are human. We make mistakes and you don't want to somehow end up with another speeding ticket before the first one falls off.
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Old 12-01-2009, 11:11 PM
 
5,720 posts, read 5,980,619 times
Reputation: 3616
Quote:
Originally Posted by coffeebean330 View Post
I understand people not wanting to pay the tickets, but if you know you were speeding and you got caught, just pay it. I got pulled over on I-88 a couple years ago doing 15 over. The cop reduced it to driving without a seat belt (he felt bad because I was hysterical), I paid it and went on with it.
Bad logic! I went through a stop sign last year and went to court. I was found not guilty. It was expensive to hire a lawyer, but LESS expensive than if I had gotten points on my license and a higher insurance rate!

Plus New York is so willing to either let you plead down or find you not guilty that it's really dumb to "just pay it." If you don't have time to go to court, you can even send your lawyer. It's not necessary that you show up.
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Old 12-04-2009, 05:54 PM
 
15 posts, read 65,236 times
Reputation: 14
Thanks for all the replies. I was in the court in Catskill yesterday, and got my ticket reduced to a parking ticket. No points on my record or anything like that. No need for a lawyer.
And yes, it was my first ticket. I bought a copy of my driving record to show it was clean, but I didn't need it.
Somebody had already changed the charge to a parking ticket when I spoke with the judge.

And coffeebean, you got your ticket reduced already, of course you shouldn't plea not guilty. But everybody I spoke to about it, advised me to plea not guilty.

Its weird that you get away with it cheaper if you make a bigger deal of it for the legal system, imo....
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Old 12-06-2009, 06:09 PM
 
237 posts, read 997,423 times
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That's great! Glad it worked out for you.
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Old 01-04-2010, 08:25 PM
 
1,594 posts, read 3,179,381 times
Reputation: 1585
Quote:
Originally Posted by coffeebean330 View Post
but if you know you were speeding and you got caught, just pay it.
Not the American way. Ask Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton, et cetera.
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