Q: I was pulled over for going 10mph over the limit, but the trooper was kind and only gave me a ticket for going 9mph over as I have never had a moving violation on my record in the 19 years I’ve been driving. I deserve the ticket and will pay the fine, but I really do not want any points on my license as my insurance is already going up moving to Maryland. Should I mitigate the ticket to keep it off my record and the points off my license or just take the hit?(Pittsburgh, PA)
A: 6-10 miles over in PA is 2 points on your record. PA and MD have reciprocity through the IC. My guess is that PennDOT will assess 2 points when the information from the MD DMV is received. Plead not guilty, go to the hearing and ask the trooper if he can make it 5 over, so you get no points in PA. He may not care since he will get his conviction, MD will get its $ and you were nice.
Q: I got a speeding ticket in Allegheny County, PA. The officer cited “Speeding 60 MPH Allowed 55 MPH”. He told that I was doing 78 MPH (He did put that on the ticket: actual 78 mph), he was giving me a break and there would be no points and record. Should I just plead guilty and pay the $150 fine or hire a lawyer to fight for it? (Youngstown, OH)
A: Unless a motorist has a bad driving, record was going excessively fast, or was a jerk to the officer, most officers will work out a speeding ticket to 5 mph and under to avoid points being assigned to the motorists driving record. Usually the officers only do this at the hearing. If you trust the ticket is indicated so, you could mail in a guilty plea and the required payment.
Q: My son (19) took the state cops on high speed chase reaching speed limits of 130 miles per hour (my Lexis). No one was injured, thank God. He did go through some field sobriety tests but apparently, they didn’t think he was high. He surrendered in the end with no incidents. There was a passenger in the vehicle but she was passed out. He did this in Allegheny County just short of the Westmoreland County line. (North Huntington, PA)
A: 75 Pa.C.S.A. Section 3733 defines the offense of fleeing or attending to elude a police officer. It is graded as a misdemeanor of the second degree. However, if the driver was DUI, left the state jurisdiction, or endangered the police or public via a high-speed chase, the crime is graded as a felony of the third degree. The maximum penalty for a M2 is 2 years in jail. The maximum penalty for a F3 is 7 years in jail. I assume he will be charged with a misdemeanor 2, fleeing and eluding. He will probably be charged with a smorgasbord of other motor vehicle offenses like speeding, reckless driving. He may also be charged with a misdemeanor level of Reckless Endangering of Another Person (REAP). Your son needs a lawyer. If your son has no criminal record, it will be considered a win to get out of this with summary motor vehicle charges. He will no doubt lose his license for at least one year. In addition, I would take his X-Box away, make him use a bicycle for transportation and get a job.
Q: 71-mph in a 45-mph zone. There is no information on the citation regarding any speed timing device that was used to calculate my speed.
A: You can always fight a traffic ticket. The issue is whether it is worth the time, effort and money balanced against your chance of winning. A lawyer would need to know more facts to give a thorough opinion, so I suggest you consult with one. My question is, if you were only cited with failure to obey a traffic control device, (red light, yield sign, whatever) which carries no points or license suspension and a small fine, why would you fight it? If you truly believe you are innocent, have a good driving record and some sort of plausible defense, plead not guilty, go to the hearing and tell your side of the story to the judge.