Bike Ticket: Ran Stop Sign

Messages
693
Location
Ont Canada
Originally Posted By: Surestick
When a cyclist approaches a red light the safest thing to do is to move to the front of the queue in front of the first car. This way the cyclist can leave first and it prevents anyone pulling a right hook (overtaking then turning right in front of the cyclist causing a collision). If I understood the OP correctly this is what he did. Once he was at the light he proceeded to make a right-on-red as he was entitled to do as the first vehicle in the queue.
If there is a bike lane then yes if not its a violation at least it is here. Sounds like its the same in Texas.
 

Win

Messages
4,705
Location
Arkansas
Originally Posted By: sleddriver
Thanks. Actually I have filed a written request to change to a bench trial. ......
There is a constitutional protection in the criminal law, a thing called a speedy trial rule, which in my state is, generally, a year from the time of arrest, if nothing happens to stay it. The impact of this is that criminal trials, almost always jury trials, take precedence on the court docket, and are dealt with before anything else. Jury trials are a real pita for everybody, both in prep time and trial time, because everything takes a lot longer with a jury involved. When you have a guy charged with a minor offense, a good tactic is to sit and insist on the right to a jury trial - never do anything to delay it, never agree to a continuance, and never do anything that could suspend the speedy trial rule - and make the prosecutor decide whether he wants to try your guy in his limited court time, or someone really important. The fewer judges, courtrooms, etc., a place has, the better this tactic works, obviously. Often, on a mickey mouse offense, the speedy trial rule will just be allowed to run, or a really good deal will be offered to close the case and get it off the docket. Sounds awful, but that's the real world - there are not enough hours in the day to try everybody charged with an offense. That's why almost everything gets plea bargained.
 
Messages
850
Location
pennsylvania, usa
That sounds like a high risk strategy. If it doesn't pan out, you can bet the prosecutor is going to go walls out to get a conviction, as I'm sure he or she would be aware of and not appreciate the strategy. I just wouldn't dedicate so much of my time and life on this relatively minor matter, and take a reasonable approach and get a pre-trial plea to a lesser offense with no points and a smaller fine. IMO, the basic fact is that the OP did commit a violation but a minor one not worthy of such a harsh penalty. The thing about trying to take advantage of the system is that if you fail you're going to get hit hard because the municipality really just wants the revenue and if they are forced to invest time and money they are REALLY going to want it. It might work, but your strategy wouldn't be for me.
 
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6,170
Location
North Coast
Dude you passed on the inside of a stopped vehicle at the intersection. This is legal nowhere. I have been riding motorcycles for over 40 years. Cars do that frequently when I am first in line at a light or stop sign....idiot drivers think if they can squeeze past you they have the right to proceed....simply untrue. I have seen at least 5 people in cars get tickets for doing the same thing you think you are entitled to do legally. Pay your fine and learn something.
 
Messages
680
Location
Iowa
Whether you will be successful in bringing to bear some common sense remains to be seen. You clearly encountered a Barney Fife type determined to save the world. I would print the bicycle safe web page and submit it as evidence. I would suggest positing that perhaps he was "busy" doing the same thing that caused him to sit at the light (in the turn lane) for so long, that he didn't see you "stop" as you pushed yourself up to the point that you could clearly see it was safe to make a right turn. Then he happened to look up just as you pushed off to go around the corner. What some are failing to comprehend is that common sense would dictate different rules for bicycles (as many for different vehicles already exist). Some states have already passed "Stop as Yield" laws, which allow a cyclist to treat a stop sign as a yield sign - and safely pass through without stopping if conditions are clear. I often have drivers wave me through, even though they have the right of way. Why would they do this? Because common sense would indicate that the "safest" outcome is to get the cyclist through the intersection in the quickest method possible. Requiring the cyclist to stop, unclip, wait for his/her turn, then clip one foot in - push off, try to get the other foot clipped, then wobble through the intersection at 3 MPH while trying to build speed - only slows down and increases the danger for everyone. https://legislature.idaho.gov/idstat/Title49/T49CH7SECT49-720.htm
 
Messages
3,321
Location
USA
Originally Posted By: Surestick
So, as a cyclist I have to ride to the right side of the road and cars can pass me but I can't pass cars?
Correct. Most kids know that before their parents let them ride a bicycle in traffic. Unless there is a bike lane-- then since you have your own lane you move independently of the cars in the car lane, which includes going faster than them if traffic allows. Since the cyclist here intended and did turn right, the "right hook" defense is a non-issue. Where there is a dedicated right turn lane but you want to go straight, you're supposed to NOT be in the right turn lane, instead set up on the white line on the right side of the rightmost straight through lane, and proceed straight through once the light turns green.
 
Last edited:
Originally Posted By: mk378
Originally Posted By: Surestick
So, as a cyclist I have to ride to the right side of the road and cars can pass me but I can't pass cars?
Correct. Most kids know that before their parents let them ride a bicycle in traffic. Unless there is a bike lane-- then since you have your own lane you move independently of the cars in the car lane, which includes going faster than them if traffic allows. Since the cyclist here intended and did turn right, the "right hook" defense is a non-issue. Where there is a dedicated right turn lane but you want to go straight, you're supposed to NOT be in the right turn lane, instead set up on the white line on the right side of the rightmost straight through lane, and proceed straight through once the light turns green.
Whether or not that's correct is going to depend on where you are from. It's not the case where I ride and I'd wager that unless the kids you refer to have very anti-cyclist parents they wouldn't have learned that either. Can you quote the section of the traffic act that says what you claim? This frustrates me because it shows the ignorance of many drivers and is part of the reason so many motorists see cyclists as such scofflaws (despite the fact that probably 99% of drivers frequently fail to obey traffic laws as well).
 

sleddriver

Thread starter
Messages
4,837
Location
Central Texas
Originally Posted By: Doog
Dude you passed on the inside of a stopped vehicle at the intersection. This is legal nowhere. I have been riding motorcycles for over 40 years. Cars do that frequently when I am first in line at a light or stop sign....idiot drivers think if they can squeeze past you they have the right to proceed....simply untrue. I have seen at least 5 people in cars get tickets for doing the same thing you think you are entitled to do legally. Pay your fine and learn something.
1. At 55, I'm a bit old to be referred to as "dude". Evidently, you're much younger...dude. 2. Your motorbike/car story doesn't apply here. Both of these require a license, registration, insurance....bicycles don't. 3. The issue at hand isn't moving to the front. I wasn't cited for that. 4. Think before you type. -------------------------------- On another matter, I received a call from the court saying my case has been transferred to another court......
 
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14,668
Location
The Old North State
Originally Posted By: sleddriver
...On another matter, I received a call from the court saying my case has been transferred to another court......
Any word on the request for a bench trial, or is that what moved to another court means? Thinking on it some more, hindsight, perhaps completely walking the bike around as suggested by another would have been beneficial. But hindsight is 20/20, and might have made no difference. I hope if not a dismissal at the least some compromise satisfactory to you can be reached.
 

CT8

Messages
15,392
Location
Idaho
Originally Posted By: sleddriver
Originally Posted By: Doog
Dude you passed on the inside of a stopped vehicle at the intersection. This is legal nowhere. I have been riding motorcycles for over 40 years. Cars do that frequently when I am first in line at a light or stop sign....idiot drivers think if they can squeeze past you they have the right to proceed....simply untrue. I have seen at least 5 people in cars get tickets for doing the same thing you think you are entitled to do legally. Pay your fine and learn something.
1. At 55, I'm a bit old to be referred to as "dude". Evidently, you're much younger...dude. 2. Your motorbike/car story doesn't apply here. Both of these require a license, registration, insurance....bicycles don't. 3. The issue at hand isn't moving to the front. I wasn't cited for that. 4. Think before you type. -------------------------------- On another matter, I received a call from the court saying my case has been transferred to another court......
When you turn 60+ the babes start referring to you as honey. It is really nice.
 

sleddriver

Thread starter
Messages
4,837
Location
Central Texas
Recent news is my case was transferred to another precinct. Not sure why. So everything had to start over again. I had to file another plea by mail. Called a few days later to ensure it was received. That's it. Not even a pre-trial date, much less a court date. I've kept an up-to-date timeline with all documentation, in a file. Also roughly sketched out my statement, including earlier measurements.
 
Messages
939
Location
IL
In Illinois we call this revenue generation. The LEO got a +1 for his performance metrics (can't call it a quota) and you got a headache.
 

sleddriver

Thread starter
Messages
4,837
Location
Central Texas
Update: Received a "Notice to appear for pre-trial" doc., dated Aug. 29, to appear at 10am on Sept. 27. "The purpose of this conference is for you and the CAs prosecuter to discuss your options in an attempt to dispose of your case without a trial...You need to bring any records or documents with you, which will assist in the resolution of your case." I brought 11x17 aerial photos of the general area, the intersection (both from above) and a few more facing East as we were. I'd also taken numerous measurements of the intersection, road slope, distance, etc. during the Summer. I also brought along a typed timeline of events & a short summary of facts. I showed up in a suit and tie. IOW, I was prepared. The 20-something prosecuter began by reading a summary the previous prosecuter, from another court, had typed during THAT pre-trial conference. I stopped her in mid-sentence when she read 'defendant has been advised of his options'. "No, I haven't. No options were presented. Furthermore, I didn't even know what the fine for this violation was. I was also told he (the 1st pros.) wasn't allowed to discuss the case." She looked at me blankly. I had spread out my papers, with the color photographs open. She didn't look at any of it, nor was she interested. Period. So much for "...you need to bring....". I asked "How much is the fine in THIS court?" Court costs are $107 and the "deferral fee" is set by the judge in her court at $149.90, for a total of $257. I can pay all now, or half now and half in 30 to 60 days. After which the ticket will be dismissed and not reported to Tx DPS. I next asked if taking drivers ed. was an option. After a brief consult with the judge, she replied "No". Some courts will allow DE, but not this one I was told. (????) I asked why the mix-up with the previous court, then having it transfered to this court which meant I had to start all over and go to the back of the line. "The officer made a mistake". I asked when could I expect my case to be heard. "Probably Jan. 2017 due to the holidays." What happens if the Officer doesn't show up? "He will be notified of the court date. He may post-pone if it interferes with his duties in which case the hearing will be set-back". I then asked what happens if a year goes by and my case still hasn't gone before the judge. She replied there's no penalty. She didn't directly answer what happens IF the officer doesn't appear. I next asked what section of the law I had violated. Turns out it was no where on any of her docs in my file. She replied "The legislature makes the laws, you can 'Google' it. I'm not going to look it up." Evidently I was taking up too much of her time, as a Sherrif's deputy approached me from behind and stated "Sir, we have other people waiting. You can finish writing outside." I replied I was still asking questions and would be just a few more minutes. They asked me to fill out and sign another form pleading not guilty. I then asked for a copy afterwards. Gathered my evidence, and was escorted out. The deputy quietly told me at the door that the pertinent law would on the DPS site. I thanked him and replied how surprised I was to be prosecuted by the county attorneys office, yet they couldn't tell what section of the law was applicable. After all, I had a right to know. He nodded and opened the door. I thanked him and exited. That was it! So much for a pre-trial conference to attempt to reach an agreement to settle this case so it doesn't have to proceed to trial. My "options" were: (1). Pay the fine of $257. Period. Some "options". Interesting that the bottom half of the doc I signed has a section labeled "Plea, Request, and Affidavit for DSC or MOTC information." Evidently by pleading No Contest, and waiving my right to a trial and discovery, I can request the court to defer proceedings for 90 days so that an approved course may be completed. Yet, I'm not allowed that option in this particular court? A boiler-plate doc used by all five county judges? Doesn't seem fair, nor equitable, nor uniform. It does appear however to be rather fishy.... They must really want the dam money!
 
Messages
2,056
Location
Sequim, WA
Originally Posted By: sleddriver
Update: I brought 11x17 aerial photos of the general area, the intersection (both from above) and a few more facing East as we were. I'd also taken numerous measurements of the intersection, road slope, distance, etc. during the Summer. I also brought along a typed timeline of events & a short summary of facts. I showed up in a suit and tie. IOW, I was prepared. I had spread out my papers, with the color photographs open. She didn't look at any of it, nor was she interested. Period. So much for "...you need to bring....".
Where have I heard that story before? Oh, yea. Alice's Restaurant by Arlo Guthrie ...And they was usin' up all kinds of cop equipment that they had hangin' Around the Police Officer Station. They was takin' plaster tire tracks, Footprints, dog-smellin' prints and they took twenty-seven 8 x 10 colored Glossy photographs with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of Each one explainin' what each one was, to be used as evidence against us. Took pictures of the approach, the getaway, the northwest corner, the Southwest corner . . . And that's not to mention the aerial photography! After the ordeal, we went back to the jail. Obie said he was gonna put us in A cell... ...It was about four or five hours later that Alice--(remember Alice? There's a Song about Alice.)--Alice came by and, with a few nasty words to Obie on the Side, bailed us out of jail, and we went back to the church, had another Thanksgiving dinner that couldn't be beat, and didn't get up until the next Morning, when we all had to go to court. We walked in, sat down, Obie came In with the twenty-seven 8 x 10 colored glossy pictures with the circles and Arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one, sat down. Man came in, said, "All rise!" We all stood up, and Obie stood up with the Twenty-seven 8 x 10 colored glossy pictures, and the judge walked in, sat Down, with a seein' eye dog and he sat down. We sat down. Obie looked at the seein' eye dog . . . then at the twenty-seven 8 x 10 Colored glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the Back of each one . . . and looked at the seein' eye dog . . . and then at The twenty-seven 8 x 10 colored glossy pictures with the circles and arrows And a paragraph on the back of each on and began to cry. Because Obie came to the realization that it was a typical case of American Blind justice, and there wasn't nothin' he could do about it, and the judge Wasn't gonna look at the twenty-seven 8 by 10 colored glossy pictures with The circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explainin' What each one was, to be used as evidence against us... Sorry for your frustration with the system, but your story made me laugh out loud. Ed
 
Seems to me if they don't know what law (or traffic act section) you violated you should be found not guilty. It isn't guilty until proven innocent. The onus is on them to prove you're guilty, not on you to prove what you did wrong.
 

sleddriver

Thread starter
Messages
4,837
Location
Central Texas
Update: Received notice last month that my trial was scheduled for today. I showed up early. Courtroom was locked. After waiting about 30min. me & others filed in, signed in and sat down. I was called in for yet another Pre-trial conference where I was offered the same deal. Pay the fine or proceed. I chose the later. After another 30min., this time the judge came in. However, the officer didn't appear and the proscecution asked for a postponement. Rather than get the case dismissed, it was rescheduled for yet another to-be-determined-date. In less than 30days, the case will be > 1yr old. What a huge waste of time. Perhaps I'll request the deputy's video camera records.
 
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1,571
Location
Ca
They run on Tax money.........No load, no stress, no responsibility, and zero money at stake. Its good, because they probably won't hang you. But, let us know if they do.
 
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