Beecher Law Firm Blog
Traffic Tickets Posts

'Minneapolis Critical Mass Arrest' found at https://flic.kr/p/2Y61L3 by Tony Webster (https://flickr.com/people/diversey) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)
'Minneapolis Critical Mass Arrest' found at https://flic.kr/p/2Y61L3 by Tony Webster (https://flickr.com/people/diversey) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)
'Minneapolis Critical Mass Arrest' found at https://flic.kr/p/2Y61L3 by Tony Webster (https://flickr.com/people/diversey) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

Want A Court Appointed Attorney?

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, mel te vero facete aperiri. Cum iusto invidunt efficiantur ne, iracundia intellegam definitiones te sea. Mei ne quot justo saepe, no modo efficiantur sea, mel iisque honestatis ei. Habeo recusabo consulatu usu ut, cum case vocibus ei. Omnis erant praesent has id. Usu dolores officiis torquatos in.

'Family' found at https://flic.kr/p/5VbWKg by rolands.lakis (https://flickr.com/people/rolandslakis) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)
'Family' found at https://flic.kr/p/5VbWKg by rolands.lakis (https://flickr.com/people/rolandslakis) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)
'Family' found at https://flic.kr/p/5VbWKg by rolands.lakis (https://flickr.com/people/rolandslakis) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

Child Custody and Visitation Rights Overview

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, in quodsi dolorum est. Ex duo magna scriptorem, ad mei ullum choro adolescens. Pro iriure integre veritus an. Offendit voluptua mediocrem his ex, mea ne libris consequat, vim ea dolore accusamus.

'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Scammers Are Using the Courts to Get Your Money

The majority of us earn a living through hard work. Nothing irks me more than one person trying to take the easy way out at the expense of another. For the past few years, scammers have used the public information act to obtain information on persons having traffic tickets and warrants to steal money from the unsuspecting individuals they contact. The Houston Municipal Courts and the Harris County Municipal Justice Bar Association have notified the media and news reports were made on the...

'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Losing Your Personal Injury Case In Traffic Court

Mary Wells is a health care worker who works the night shift taking care of elderly patients in a nursing home. Mary is also a single mother to a 10 year old son, Mario and a 17 year old daughter, Felicia. After work on Friday night, Mary picks up Mario the next morning from her sister's to get his prescription from the local pharmacy. After getting Mario's prescription, she drives to pick Felicia up from her high school's band practice. Mary exits the parking lot on San Felipe and heads to...

'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Top Five Things That Could Go Wrong In Traffic Court

Ed completely forgot about appearing for his no insurance, speeding and expired registration ticket he received three months ago. He was not worried about the ticket despite the advertisements he received in the mail from law offices telling him of his warrants. He discussed his situation with his friends and family. Their responses varied. His friend Steve told him to hire an attorney to get rid of the warrants. His older brother Anthony, told him to mail in the court payments and just be...

'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()

The Texas Ticket For Failure to Drive In A Single Lane

Bert and Elise were visiting their granddaughter Josephine for her first Thanksgiving. They were driving from Austin but made it to the Houston city limits. Bert saw his exit on US 290 and took it. No less than two minutes after he exited the freeway, he saw flashing red and blue lights in his rearview mirror. Bert was surprised because he was careful to maintain his speed and was aware of committing no traffic violations. He pulled over to the side of the road. Elise looked just as surprised...

'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Smile, You Are On Camera During That Traffic Stop

Ben jumped in his cobalt blue 2018 mustang convertible. His parents got him the car as a high school graduation gift. He picked up his date Charlotte. Ben was excited has he spent most of high school trying to get Charlotte's attention. After graduation and getting his new car, Charlotte took a new look at Ben and agreed to go out with him. Now, they were on the way to their first date at the movie theater on Westcreek and Westheimer. Ben planned for a romantic evening. They would eat dinner...

'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Texas Driver's License Suspension After An Auto Accident Civil Judgment

Sophia was excited.1 She was an avid hat pin collector and her new hat pin was scheduled to arrive today. Hat pins were how she remembered her grandmother Adassa. Her grandmother developed her interest in hat pins beauty and history. She wore her hat pins proudly on her work apron at the hardware store. It was one of the few things her boss allowed to be worn on her work hats or apron to express individuality. Sophia was as giddy as a child in anticipation of what was to arrive in her mail...

'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()
'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Top Ten Excuses Given To Get Out of A Speeding Ticket And Why They Don't Work

10. “But I Am A Member Of The 100 Club”

Want A Court Appointed Attorney?

'Minneapolis Critical Mass Arrest' found at https://flic.kr/p/2Y61L3 by Tony Webster (https://flickr.com/people/diversey) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, mel te vero facete aperiri. Cum iusto invidunt efficiantur ne, iracundia intellegam definitiones te sea. Mei ne quot justo saepe, no modo efficiantur sea, mel iisque honestatis ei. Habeo recusabo consulatu usu ut, cum case vocibus ei. Omnis erant praesent has id. Usu dolores officiis torquatos in.

Omnis assueverit an sea, eu mel possim delenit gubergren. Salutatus intellegebat sea ne, id commodo perpetua repudiare per. Has ne error causae, est an atomorum imperdiet. Ea sed tale eruditi postulant, vim ei blandit antiopam democritum. In pri commodo aperiri contentiones, ne his labore integre eripuit. Has modus aliquid nominavi eu.

Sea case tractatos ex, vix no augue temporibus. Mazim tollit vix cu, salutandi expetenda ut per. Exerci utinam animal in qui, ea melius ceteros posidonium sea. Sed ex nonumy hendrerit conceptam. Pro sale possit te. Sit harum commune complectitur ne, eu mundi persius officiis cum.

Probo placerat at mea, ad vidit consequuntur vim, ex dicat incorrupte persequeris mea. Volumus deleniti adversarium te quo, ei dolor docendi inciderint mea. Aliquip consequuntur et quo, ea sit idque vocibus periculis. Ut eum oblique laboramus, id illum signiferumque his.

Child Custody and Visitation Rights Overview

'Family' found at https://flic.kr/p/5VbWKg by rolands.lakis (https://flickr.com/people/rolandslakis) used under Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, in quodsi dolorum est. Ex duo magna scriptorem, ad mei ullum choro adolescens. Pro iriure integre veritus an. Offendit voluptua mediocrem his ex, mea ne libris consequat, vim ea dolore accusamus.

Accusam consectetuer ex nec, nam fuisset deleniti menandri te, oblique graecis neglegentur ex duo. Tibique iudicabit liberavisse et eos. Laoreet imperdiet percipitur vis ne, eu per graecis suscipit. Ne usu ponderum constituto dissentiunt. In stet facete vis. Vis no vide viderer, id aperiri integre perfecto quo.

Eum ad integre molestie percipitur, ei mundi denique incorrupte nec. His in dico prima iracundia. Et duo feugiat utroque debitis. Illum nobis omnes no ius. Nec ad omnes everti philosophia, eu ubique sadipscing mea.

Pri debitis consequat urbanitas te. Vel ei minimum tacimates disputando, cu altera prompta volutpat sed. Suscipit tincidunt in quo, et his tantas constituto, et iudico graeco usu. Vitae soleat ne duo. At ubique legimus vel.

Scammers Are Using the Courts to Get Your Money

'' found at  by  () used under  ()

The majority of us earn a living through hard work.  Nothing irks me more than one person trying to take the easy way out at the expense of another.  For the past few years, scammers have used the public information act to obtain information on persons having traffic tickets and warrants to steal money from the unsuspecting individuals they contact. The Houston Municipal Courts and the Harris County Municipal Justice Bar Association have notified the media and news reports were made on the matter.  Nevertheless, the scam is ongoing because many are still unaware of it.  I firmly believe the more light shed on this scam, the less likely others are to become victims to it.

The Scam

Scammers use text messages to contact a person and notify them they have a warrant or pending traffic ticket.  They then request payment over the phone to reset the cases or to get rid of the warrants.  The unsuspecting victim, pays over the phone and are assured their cases are taken care of. After some time, the victim receives notice from the Houston Municipal court that their arraignments are now in warrants.  The other way this plays out is the person is stopped during a traffic stop and is notified they have outstanding warrants.   Alternatively, upon trying to renew a driver's license, the person discovers the cases or warrants they paid to have taken care of are outstanding and now prevents them from renewing their driver's license or worse, has resulted in a license suspension.

The Scam's Underpinnings Revealed

In today's world, many of us rely on our phones to interact with our friends and loved ones and to even conduct our day to day business. Thus, when a person receives notice of an open ticket or warrants via text message, many think nothing of it because our cell phones are an integral part of everyday life.  Nevertheless, the Houston Municipal Court will not notify a defendant of pending traffic tickets or warrants via text.  For notice to be proper in a court of law, it must be given in person or via first class mail. A person therefore can spot a scammer by their methodology of contact.  If someone notifies you by text message and ask that you submit payment over the phone for upcoming traffic tickets or warrants for the Houston Municipal Courts, this is a scam.

Attorneys Will Not Seek Clients By Text Messages

An attorney will not initiate contact with a potential client via text message. Such conduct will get that attorney in trouble with the State Bar of Texas for the unlawful solicitation of legal services.  Please note, nothing prohibits an attorney from informing you of said tickets and warrants in a letter or postcard.  However the key here, is it is sent through the mail.  The letter or postcard should indicate that it is an advertisement, most likely, will have key details regarding the ticket number, and/or offense and will provide contact information for the law office.

Legitimate Ways a Warrant is Removed

There are three ways to get rid of a warrant.  The first is a person goes to the office of a bondsman or attorney who is a surety, gives their finger prints and pertinent information to complete the bond, and that bondsman or attorney submits the bond to the court and receives a new court date on your behalf. This will start the court process anew and give the individual an opportunity to defend against the alleged offenses in a court of law.  The second way, is to go to the courthouse yourself or hire an attorney to go on your behalf, speak with a prosecutor and/or judge in an effort to resolve the underlying case and thereby get rid of the warrant.  After that the person may ask a judge to remove the warrant.  It will be in the judge's discretion to grant or deny that request based upon the circumstances.  There are some cases where negotiation will not rid the person of the underlying fine because of prior negotiations between the person and court personnel.  However, usually a payment agreement will be possible.  The third manner is a person calls the court and pays the underlying cases and associated costs and fees that the warrants were issued for.  However, depending on the outstanding cases, paying the underlying cases could result in points on the person's license, conviction based surcharges owed to the State of Texas, potential problems renewing a license and/or a license suspension.

Author's Information:  Attorney Tracey A. Beecher represents persons accused of  class c misdemeanors and city code ordinance violations within the City of Houston Municipal Courts, Harris County Justice of the Peace Courts and Fort Bend County Justice of the Peace Courts.  

Legal Disclaimer: Each person's situation and circumstances are unique. As such, this article is given to provide general information only. It is not legal advice nor is it intended as a substitute for legal counsel. Should the reader need legal advice or counsel, it is appropriate to seek the assistance of a licensed attorney.



Losing Your Personal Injury Case In Traffic Court

'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Mary Wells is a health care worker who works the night shift taking care of elderly patients in a nursing home.  Mary is also a single mother to a 10 year old son, Mario and a 17 year old daughter, Felicia. After work on Friday night, Mary picks up Mario the next morning from her sister's to get his prescription from the local pharmacy.  After getting Mario's prescription, she drives to pick Felicia up from her high school's band practice.  Mary exits the parking lot on San Felipe and heads to the turn lane.  She crosses the first two lanes without any problems but as she attempts to cross the third lane, her Toyota Corolla is hit by a GMC Yukon driven by Axel Karlsson.  The hit was significant and sends Mary's Corolla into a light post on the other side of the street. Fortunately, Mario, who was in the back seat suffered no injuries. Mary's car was totaled and she suffered a tear in her cornea from the impact of airbag and two slipped discs in her back.  Axel's car was damaged as well but he suffered no injuries.

After speaking with Mary and Mario and then with Axel, the police officer investigating the accident issued Axel a ticket for failure to control speed.  Mary was in a lot of pain after the accident and she missed about two weeks off from work without pay.  After she returned to work, the slipped discs in her lumbar did not allow her to do any heavy lifting, which is sometimes required for when she is helping her patients to the shower, or in and out of bed.  She was unable to keep her job because she could no longer perform her duties.  Mary was very concerned about the medical bills she incurred after the accident to treat her back and eyes and she could not keep borrowing her sister's car forever.  To top it off, Axel's insurance company was giving her the run a round.  They took the position that the ticket was wrong and that it was Mary's obligation to look first before she crossed into Axel's lane and verify it was safe to cross. She decided to hire a personal injury attorney to help her out.  Her attorney told her his aim was to get her $35,000 to cover the damages to her car, injuries and medical bills. She was steaming mad that Axel's insurance company was not taking care of this situation and that it was dragging on.  

A few weeks after the accident, Mary received a subpoena to appear in her precinct's Justice of the Peace court to testify against Axel on his traffic ticket.  She decided this was her chance to get justice.  She could get her side out and probably help her civil case. She discussed the subpoena with her personal injury lawyer.  However, because this was not the civil case the attorney was hired to represent Mary for, the attorney did not prepare her for a trial on the traffic accident case in the JP court.

When Mary showed up, she spoke with the district attorney and learned that Axel could plea out his case with defensive driving or deferred adjudication.  Even though it would clear his record, Mary was ok with that because at least he would pay something and that would show the civil court and the insurance company she was right and Axel was the cause of the accident.  When the district attorney called her again to speak with her, she was surprised to learn that Axel was not taking a plea deal.  It made her piping mad.  Here it was that he hit her, risked her son's life, caused her injures, medical bills, lost wages and even the lost of her job and this joker could not take responsibility for his actions.  

During the trial, Mary is sworn in and  takes the stand.  She nailed it on direct examination.  She identified Axel as the driver of the GMC Yukon, said he was the cause of the accident and had it not been for his failure to control his speed, the accident would not have happened.  She even mentioned that she thought he was speeding because of the impact to her car. Cross examination, though, was a different story.  During cross, she was forced to admit that she knew as a driver she had a duty to look first and verify she had a clear pathway before leaving the parking lot and crossing each lane on a roadway.  She also admitted, the drivers in lane one and two gave her permission to cross but she never looked before crossing in the third lane to see if the pathway was clear.  Then that pesky defense attorney caused her to admit that at the time of the accident she did not sleep from the night before and she was looking at a text message from Felicia that practice ended early.

Mary felt shaken after giving her testimony.  However, she thought surely the jury will find in her favor and find Axel guilty.  She reasoned it did not matter that she did not look before crossing into his lane, he should not have driven at that speed.  The jury deliberates for a hour and a half.  They come back with their decision.  They respond yes, when the judge asks them if their decision was unanimous. The verdict is read.  

Did Mary Win?

Accident cases are often the link between a personal injury case and a traffic ticket. The same underlying facts and law in an accident can form the basis for a civil personal injury case and a criminal traffic case. As a result, many people confuse the two.  

Points on A Driving Record vs. Monetary Damages

Common charges for accident cases filed as class c misdemeanors include, but are not limited to, failure to control speed, changing lanes unsafely, turning from a direct course, running a red light and running a stop sign. District attorneys are interested in bringing cases to juries that they believe they can win.  Their goal is to get convictions on those class c misdemeanors.  The district attorney in order to get a conviction must prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt.  It is the highest  burden of proof to prevail in litigation. Once a person receives a conviction on an accident case, they will receive three points on their driving record.1 Given, that usually the accident is only witnessed by the persons involved and persons at the scene, a conviction is not possible without the testimony of said witnesses. The problem however, is the risk involved for the witness if they have an unsettled personal injury case from the same accident.

The common law principle behind personal injury claims is to restore the injured person to where they were prior to the accident. The injured party is paid to cover medical bills, injuries suffered, and/or lost income that they would not have suffered but for another party's negligence in causing the accident.  Negligence claims are established by demonstrating 1)  duty owed to the injured party 2) breach of that duty 3) proximate cause of damages caused by the breach and 3) damages suffered.2 Monetary damages vary greatly but it is not unusual for an injured party to recover large lump sums that can be financially life changing.  Insurance companies do not pay out claims against their insureds easily.  Because great monies are at risk in personal injury cases, the insurance companies will go to great lengths to investigate a claim before either coming to a settlement or even before the parties will go to trial on the matter.

A Plea Deal on A Traffic Ticket Cannot Be Used to Bolster A Personal Injury Claim

When a person is charged with a traffic ticket, they are alleged to have committed a class c misdemeanor.  Accident cases filed in a Texas municipality or a justice of the peace court is treated as a class c misdemeanor as well.  Any person charged with a class c misdemeanor receives the same right to jury trial as any other person charged with a criminal offense in Texas.  Many witnesses believe that once a person pleas to their accident case, that will allow them to win in their personal injury claim.  However, that is not necessarily true. A plea may be used in a personal injury claim if the defendant pleas guilty or is found guilty by a jury.  What is usually the case, however, if a defendant decides to pay the allegation, take defensive driving or take deferred adjudication, they plea nolo contendere. Nolo contendere means the accused accepts the penalty of a guilty plea but does not admit guilt in the alleged offense. 3 A nolo contendere plea cannot be used as evidence in a civil case. 4 The defendant has a right to enter a nolo contendere plea if they choose to.  While it is a Judge's discretion to accept or deny any plea deal made by a prosecutor and a defendant, in traffic court, those plea deals are usually accepted.  

A Traffic Accident Trial Exposes Great Risks To The Witness Who Is A Personal Injury Claimant

In our fictional scenario above, we asked the reader to determine if Mary won.  Mary decided to testify to bolster her civil case. However, her admissions on the stand may hurt her ability to recoup her damages in her civil case.  Win, loose, or draw, Mary made some admissions that now implicates her full or partial culpability for the accident.  You see Texas uses a modified comparative fault standard for negligence claims filed in the state.  A claimant is not permitted to recover damages in any negligence case, including accidents, if the claimant's responsibility for the cause is greater than 50%.5 Even if a claimant is allowed to recover damages, their damages will be reduced by their deemed percentage of fault.6  In a nutshell, if a civil court agrees with the insurance company and finds from Mary's admissions that she bears more than 50% responsibility for the accident, Mary will get nothing of the $35,000 her lawyers believed she could recover.  Let's say the civil court finds Axel is mostly responsible for the accident but Mary still bears 35% of the responsibility for causing the accident, even if the court finds her damages are $35,000, her award would be reduced  by 35% and she would recover only $22,750 before attorney fees are taken out.  

If the jury in the justice of the peace court finds Axel guilty, not guilty, or are unable to reach a verdict, the insurance company can get Mary's transcribed testimony from the court reporter and use it in her civil case.  Mary is now unable to deny she made the admissions because her statements are now admissible in her civil court as a declarant's prior statement.7 Even if Mary never steps foot in a civil courtroom, her statements under oath are now available to the insurance company as leverage in their case.

Did Mary Win?

The fictional demonstration regarding Mary Wells demonstrates a scenario that plays out far too frequently in traffic court.  Persons with pending personal injuries claims come to the courthouse with the expectation that a victory in traffic court will make their civil case a slam dunk. However, because they are unfamiliar with the nuances of criminal law, civil law and the Texas rules of evidence, they do not see or understand the great risks taken with their civil claims.  Furthermore, because they are wholly unprepared for cross examination by a party opponent, said witnesses do not process what can happen to their civil cases. There is no guarantee that the witness will be able to use the traffic court defendant's testimony in their civil case either. A defendant can choose to not testify and their decision not to testify cannot be held against them in trial. It is a defendant's constitutional right under the Texas8 and United States Constitution.9

Thus, what does a traffic court accident witness gain from their decision to testify?  They will not be paid for their decision to testify. They may not get the testimony of the accused as they can choose to exercise their right to not testify.  Regardless of the traffic court's verdict, the accident witness exposes themselves to potential liability in their civil claim under Texas' modified comparative negligence law and risks eliminating or reducing their ability to collect damages.  

Author's Information:  Attorney Tracey A. Beecher represents persons accused of  class c misdemeanors and city code ordinance violations within the City of Houston Municipal Courts, Harris County Justice of the Peace Courts and Fort Bend County Justice of the Peace Courts.  

Legal Disclaimer: Each person's situation and circumstances are unique. As such, this article is given to provide general information only. It is not legal advice nor is it intended as a substitute for legal counsel. Should the reader need legal advice or counsel, it is appropriate to seek the assistance of a licensed attorney.

1See Texas Driver Responsibility Program at https://www.dps.texas.gov/DriverLicense/drp.htm

2 Rodriguez-Escobar v. Goss, 392 S.W.3d 109, 113 (Tex. 2013)

3Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Art. 27.02 (5)

4Texas Rules of Evidence 410(a)

5 Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code 33.01-33.02

6 Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code 33.03

7Texas Rules of Evidence 801(e)

8 Texas Bill of Rights, Section 10: https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/CN/htm/CN.1.htm

9 United States Constitution, Fifth Amendment. https://constitutioncenter.org/interactive-constitution/amendments/amendment-v

Top Five Things That Could Go Wrong In Traffic Court

'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Ed completely forgot about appearing for his no insurance, speeding and expired registration ticket he received three months ago.  He was not worried about the ticket despite the advertisements he received in the mail from law offices telling him of his warrants.  He discussed his situation with his friends and family. Their responses varied. His friend Steve told him to hire an attorney to get rid of the warrants.  His older brother Anthony, told him to mail in the court payments and just be done with the case.  However, he liked his girlfriend Carlene's advice best.  She told him once she was in the same situation and she did not go back to court until two years after she got her ticket.  Nothing happened to her and by the time she resolved the ticket, the cop did not remember her case and all her tickets were dismissed.  Carlene suggested he wait at least a year and then go resolve the tickets.  Ed liked that idea.  He thought why not try Carlene's advice.  She did the same thing, got her cases dismissed and nothing happened to her.  After all its traffic court, what could possibly go wrong?

Most Texans come into contact with our system of justice through our municipal and justice courts when they receive a traffic ticket.  Many of these courts are more readily accessible to the average person. Yet, the familiarity of traffic courts and their size sometimes lead to the mistaken belief that the judgments issued there will be of no consequence.  So what can go wrong for a person in traffic court?

1. Leave Money On The Table

It never fails to surprise me how many people think if they get a ticket, it would be best to save time and just pay the window fine at the courthouse or through the mail.  However, what is saved in time could end up costing more money.  Electing to appear before a judge or jury could lead to the discovery of motions to dismiss the ticket on legal merits.  Even if a legal motion to dismiss does not exist, agreements are possible that could save a person from paying all of their tickets where they were issued more than one charge or to reduce the fine amount where only one charge is involved.   Persons who pay their tickets at the courthouse or through the mail, walk away from the possibility of paying nothing or reducing the fine amount owed.

2. Obtain Points on Your Texas Driver's License

Texas Drivers must adhere to the Department of Public Safety's Driver Responsibility Program.1 A person who receives a moving violation conviction of a traffic law is assessed two points.  For each moving violation conviction that results in an accident, a person is assessed three points.2 When a person receives six points in a three year time period, they must pay surcharges of $100 per year until the points assessed are less than six points.3 Any conviction that results in additional points over six points in a three year time frame will result in an additional surcharge of $25 per year.4 Convictions for moving violations can assess points for a period of three years.  The accumulation of any points on a driving record could lead to an increase in insurance rates.

3. Pick up Surcharges From A Conviction Based Offense

A driver who pleas to an offense that is conviction based under the Driver Responsibility Program can also owe surcharges regardless of if any points are assessed on their records.  Cases such as  driving while license suspended, no driver's license, incorrect license endorsement and no insurance can result in surcharges of between $100 to $250 per year.5 A conviction for a license based offense or a no insurance offense will assess surcharges on a person's driving record for three years.

4. Gain A Warrant

A traffic citation is a crime that is not punishable by jail time.  However, a person who receives a citation and fails to appear for their court date risks the issuance of an arrest warrant.6 An arrest warrant authorizes a peace officer to arrest an individual who misses court so they may appear before the municipal court or justice of the peace to resolve their case.7 A person who misses court may avoid jail time by posting a bond.8 A person may also return to the courthouse where the warrant was issued to resolve the matter and terminate the warrant.9 If the warrant exists for greater than thirty days, additional state fees and collection costs may be given to a person who misses court.10 A capias pro fine warrant may also be issued for a person who makes a plea agreement with a court and does pay in accodance with the agreement.11 In that instance a bond is not available. Either payment in full, a payment arrangement or an agreement to do community service must be made with the court to avoid arrest.

5. Receive A Revoked or Suspended Driver's License

The inability to exercise one's driving privilege is a possible consequence of what transpires in traffic court.  Any person who fails to pay the assessed state surcharges from conviction based surcharges or because they surpassed the allotted six points in a three year time period can lose their driving license.12 Additionally, habitual offenders, persons who receive four or more points in a one year period or persons who receive seven or more points in a two year period, can lose their privilege to drive.13 A person who has been convicted of charges for driving while license is suspended or any charge that would indicate the person operated a motor vehicle while their license is suspended faces a potential longer license suspension.14 License renewal may be denied where a person fails to take care of their traffic warrants and the assessed state fees.15    A person who has a capias warrant due to their failure to pay court costs and fines in accordance with a court order also faces the potential revocation of their license.16  

If like Ed you missed your court date, contact the Beecher Law Firm to see how we can assist you in the removal of your warrants and the protection of your driving privilege.

Author's Information: Attorney Tracey A. Beecher represents persons accused of  class c misdemeanors and city code ordinance violations within the City of Houston Municipal Courts, Harris County Justice of the Peace Courts and Fort Bend County Justice of the Peace Courts.  

Legal Disclaimer: Each person's situation and circumstances are unique. As such, this article is given to provide general information only. It is not legal advice nor is it intended as a substitute for legal counsel. Should the reader need legal advice or counsel, it is appropriate to seek the assistance of a licensed attorney.

 

1 https://www.dps.texas.gov/internetforms/Forms/DL-103.pdf

2 Texas Transportation Code § 708.052 (a - b)

 3 Id.  at  § 708.053

 4 Id.  at § 708.054

 5 Id.  at §§ 708.103 and 708.104

 6 Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Art. 45.014(a)

 7 Id. at Art. 45.015

 8 Id. at Art. 45.016

 9 Id. at Art. 45.014(g)

 10 Texas Transportation Code § 706.006

11 Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Art. 45.045

 12 Texas Transportation Code § 708.151(c)

 13 Id. at § 521.292(a)(3)

 14 Id. at § 521.292(a)(1)

 15 Id. at § 706.004(a)

 16 Id. at § 521.294

The Texas Ticket For Failure to Drive In A Single Lane

'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Bert and Elise were visiting their granddaughter Josephine for her first Thanksgiving. They were driving from Austin but made it to the Houston city limits. Bert saw his exit on US 290 and took it.  No less than two minutes after he exited the freeway, he saw flashing red and blue lights in his rearview mirror.  Bert was surprised because he was careful to maintain his speed and was aware of committing no traffic violations.  He pulled over to the side of the road.  Elise looked just as surprised because she thought her husband did nothing wrong.  The officer walked to the vehicle.  He asked Bert for his license and insurance.  Bert complied and the officer went to his vehicle.  The officer returned and told Bert he was writing him a ticket for failing to drive in a single lane.  Bert did not understand why he was getting the ticket and asked the officer why he was pulled over. The officer explained that Bert's tires crossed the marked lines of the lane and thats why he was receiving the ticket.  Once  the officer left, Bert and Elise discussed the ticket.  They were both furious because they did not think Bert violated the law.  However, they did not live in Houston.  Bert told Elise he disagreed with the ticket but given the time constraints he would just mail in a payment.  Elise indicated to Bert, if he paid the ticket he may mess up his driving record.  Bert was now even more confused how to proceed.

Fail to Drive in a Single Lane

Each driver must maintain a single lane when using Texas roadways.  A driver could receive a ticket for failure to drive in a a single lane when that driver is

a. on a roadway with two or more clearly marked lanes;

b. fails to drive as nearly as practical in a single lane; and

c. moves from that lane when movement cannot be made safely.1

 A Texas Driver may also receive a failure to drive in a single lane ticket where they move to the center of a roadway with three lanes that provides for two-way movement of traffic and no legal exception applies.2

How It Impacts Your Driving Record

A conviction for a failure to drive in a single lane will incur points under the Texas Driver Responsibilty Program.  A person who receives this ticket and pays it at the courthouse window, online or through the mail will receive a conviction and points assessed to their driving record. Any person who is convicted of this offense in a judge or jury trial will also receive a conviction and incur points on their driving record. However, if a court finds an accident resulted from the violation, then three points will be added to the driver's driving record.3 The points will remain on the record for a period of three years.4

In the fictional characterization above, Bert would be wise to listen to his wife.  If he mails in a payment for his ticket, it will result in two points on his driving record.  Those points will remain on Bert's driving record for a period of three years.  

Fine Range

Excluding court costs, the fine range for failure to maintain a single lane is between $1 to $ 200.

Defense

A failure to maintain single lane charge is uniquely based on the perception of the officer.  As such, there are ways individuals like Bert can attack the bases of such a ticket.  Since paying the fine can damage a person's Texas driving record, seeking the advice of counsel on the best course of action would be wise.  If you are in need of a defense attorney to protect your driving record after receiving a failure to drive in single lane ticket, reach out to us on our contact page to find out how our attorney can assist you.

Author's Information: Attorney Tracey A. Beecher represents persons accused of  class c misdemeanors and city code ordinance violations within the City of Houston Municipal Courts, Harris County Justice of the Peace Courts and Fort Bend County Justice of the Peace Courts.  

Legal Disclaimer: Each person's situation and circumstances are unique. As such, this article is given to provide general information only. It is not legal advice nor is it intended as a substitute for legal counsel. Should the reader need legal advice or counsel, it is appropriate to seek the assistance of a licensed attorney.

 Bibliography

Photo by Michael Gaida, https://pixabay.com/en/users/michaelgaida-652234/ 

1 Texas Transportation Code 545.060 (a)

2 Id. at (b).

3 https://www.dps.texas.gov/internetforms/Forms/DL-103.pdf  

4 37 Texas  Admin. Code § 15.89(b); see also http://texreg.sos.state.tx.us/fids/201403910-1.html  

Smile, You Are On Camera During That Traffic Stop

'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Ben jumped in his cobalt blue 2018 mustang convertible. His parents got him the car as a high school graduation gift.  He picked up his date Charlotte.  Ben was excited has he spent most of high school trying to get Charlotte's attention.  After graduation and getting his new car, Charlotte took a new look at Ben and agreed to go out with him. Now, they were on the way to their first date at the movie theater on Westcreek and Westheimer.  Ben planned for a romantic evening.  They would eat dinner at the restaurant in the movie theater and then go see a romantic comedy which Charlotte picked out.  The movie started at 8p.  Ben purchased their tickets online before arriving to ensure reserving their seats to the movie.  However, Charlotte took more time than expected in preparing for their date and they left her parents downtown home at 7:45 pm.  Ben's GPS showed it would take 25 minutes to arrive at their destination.  In an effort to make his date with Charlotte perfect Ben rushed off to their destination.  He and Charlotte made great time, shaving some five minutes of his trip.  However,  by the time he exited IH 610 and San Felipe, he noticed red and blue lights flashing behind him.  Ben, upset that his date with Charlotte was going awry, pulled over and awaited the officer's approach.  

Officer: Good evening, do you know why I pulled you over.

Ben: No I don't read minds.

Officer: I clocked you going 87 in 60 back there on the freeway.  

Ben: Yeah I may have sped up a little back there but whatever man, just issue me your ticket and lets get moving.  We are running late for our movie and you're taking too much time.

Officer: Are you aware your tail light is out?

Ben: Nope, I was not.  Dude how much longer is this gonna take?

Officer: Your registration is also expired.

Ben: Look officer, you obviously have your quota to make for the month. Write me up for what you're gonna write me up for and lets get this moving.

The police officer after obtaining Ben's license and insurance, thoroughly checked Ben's license for outstanding warrants but found nothing.  After running the warrant check, he returned to Ben's vehicle and issued him citations for speeding, expired registration and a defective taillight. Ben and Charlotte did not make their movie.  Furthermore, Charlotte, the grand-daughter of a cop, was not impressed with Ben's interaction with the officer and decided she would never date Ben again. Ben, however, believed Charlotte's decision to stop seeing him was the officer's fault and vowed he would fight his case in court.  

Ben hired a traffic ticket lawyer to fight his cases.  He was confident since the case rested on his word verses the officer's word of what happened, he could convince a jury to find him not guilty. On his first trial date, he told his lawyer money and time were not an issue, he wanted to fight his case before a jury.  His lawyer agreed but told him she did not wish to try his case by ambush.  Ben asked for an explanation.  His lawyer explained she wanted to view all evidence material to Ben's case prior to trial. If she did not, the prosecutor could bring it up in trial and it could pose problems for Ben's defense. As a result, she would request any and all video recordings of his traffic stop to avoid any surprises during trial.  Ben looked at his lawyer inquiringly, then asked “Wait, there's a video?”

Cameras Are The Unseen Witnesses In Traffic Ticket Cases

The city of Houston Police department began using body cameras as early as 2013 and began implementing use on a wide scale throughout the department in April 2016.1 As of today, it is not uncommon for other surrounding counties and municipalities to have their law enforcement equipped with body worn cameras and/or dash cameras.  Interactions between citizens and law enforcement during a traffic stop are recorded and kept as evidence.2 Thus, now its not merely the officers words against an accused in a traffic stop but the recorded interactions of the scene and what was said at the scene are kept as evidence for trial.  Depending on the positioning of the camera, it can capture the alleged offense, though this is difficult to do in speeding offenses or offenses where the officer is on view while driving.  The cameras leave no wiggle room to dispute the recorded statements between officer and ticket recipient at the scene of a traffic stop.  However, this dichotomy is advantageous to the officer as they are more aware the camera is on.3 Motorists, however, are unaware or not thinking about the camera's presence when stopped for a traffic violation. Persons like Ben who make statements admitting violations or contrary to their interests at the scene are likely to face a rude awakening when faced with the video of their traffic stop.

Requirements For The Body-Worn Camera In A Traffic Stop

Each Houston police officer is required to turn their body worn camera on in stand by mode when on duty and performing any routine activity. If engaged in law enforcement activity, the body-worn camera shall be turned on to the activate mode to enable recording.  Law enforcement activity is any event where an officer uses his/her police authority or performs any investigation, regardless if the investigation is consensual.  Any officer engaged in the traffic stop of a vehicle or a pedestrian, whether by car pursuit or after flagging the person to stop, shall activate their body-worn camera. The device will record the police activity has it occurs and will also save up to two minutes of video prior to the device's activation from standby mode. The device must be activated until police activity ceases or until there is a permitted reason to deactivate the camera. Even if a citizen requests the camera to be turned off, officers are not required to stop recording.  Persons who come into contact with law enforcement will be able to see the camera as it is worn on the front of the officer's uniform above the horizontal mid-line of the torso.4

Dash-Cameras Place in Your Traffic Stop

In addition to the body worn cameras, some of the cars within the department's fleet are equipped with dash-cameras.  The dash-cameras are positioned on the dash board of the officer's vehicle.  It is designed to record the view from the officer's car while a traffic stop is ongoing. Typically, it will show the officer's approach to the vehicle in a traffic stop, the surrounding scene and any movement between the parked vehicles while the traffic stop is ongoing.  

Motorists Have A Right to Review the Video 

A defendant to a traffic case is entitled to review and may request a review or copy of the dash-camera's and/or body worn camera's recording. Any recordings of a defendant or a witness material to a defendant's case must be made available upon defendant's request pursuant to the Morton Act.5 Upon a defendant's request, the prosecutor's office must make any recording of a defendant or recordings of witnesses to a defendant's case available for inspection and/or copying.  HPD's policy is to keep their traffic cases' recordings for two years after the traffic stop.6

Protect Your Traffic Case

While no person is required to be polite or courteous to another, do keep in mind that the interaction between motorist and officer is likely recorded.  As such, not only are the statements recorded and preserved, but each gesture, attitude of officer and motorist are also recorded for court consumption.  During trial, the judge and/or jury shall see and hear from the camera's recording.  Hashing it out with the officer at the scene could cause more harm than good.  

If you are in a situation similar to Ben, contact our firm to see how we may assist you in your traffic ticket case.

Author's Information: Attorney Tracey A. Beecher represents persons accused of class c misdemeanors and city code ordinance violations within the City of Houston Municipal Courts, Harris County Justice of the Peace Courts and Fort Bend County Justice of the Peace Courts.  

Legal Disclaimer: Each person's situation and circumstances are unique. As such, this article is given to provide general information only. It is not legal advice nor is it intended as a substitute for legal counsel. Should the reader need legal advice or counsel, it is appropriate to seek the assistance of a licensed attorney.

Sources 

Photo by Arvin Febry on Unsplash 

1 See HPD Starts To Arm Officers with Body Cameras by Emma Hinchliffe on web page https://www.houstontx.gov/police/nr/2016/apr/nr041416-1.htm  

 2  See https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/HPD-starts-to-arm-officers-with-body-cameras-7249824.php  

 3 Any officer issued a body worn camera shall be trained in its operation prior to its use.  See Houston Police Department General Order 400-28, Body Worn Cameras on web page https://www.houstontx.gov/police/pdfs/Body-Worn-Cameras.pdf  

 4 See id. at pages 1-4.

 5 Texas Code of Crim. Proc.,  Art. 39.14.  See  also The Dawn of New Discovery Rules by Randall Simms on web page https://www.tdcaa.com/journal/dawn-new-discovery-rules  

6 Houston Police Department General Order 400-28 Body Worn Cameras on web page https://www.houstontx.gov/police/pdfs/Body-Worn-Cameras.pdf , pages 8-9.

Texas Driver's License Suspension After An Auto Accident Civil Judgment

'' found at  by  () used under  ()

Sophia was excited.1 She was an avid hat pin collector and her new hat pin was scheduled to arrive today.  Hat pins were how she remembered her grandmother Adassa.  Her grandmother developed her interest in hat pins beauty and history.  She wore her hat pins proudly on her work apron at the hardware store.  It was one of the few things her boss allowed to be worn on her work hats or apron to express individuality.  Sophia was as giddy as a child in anticipation of what was to arrive in her mail box today.  When she arrived home, she parked her car and scurried almost in a skip to her mailbox.  She gathered her mail but the box with the smiley face, the sure sign of her package's arrival, was not in her mailbox.  She was not pleased but looked through the rest of her mail. One letter did spark her interest.  It was from the Texas Department of Public Safety. Sophia opened the letter to read.  The letter detailed that DPS would suspend her Texas driver's license because she failed to pay a judgment finding her at fault for an auto accident.  The $23,000 civil judgment against Sophia was rendered eighteen months ago and remained unpaid.  Sophia's heart skipped a beat.  Without a driver's license she could not get to work or to her classes at the University of Houston. She wondered how could this be? What did a civil judgment have to do with her driving license, anyway?

License Suspension Can Result From An Unpaid Civil Judgment In An Auto Accident Case

Our fictional character Sophia was wrong.  An unpaid civil judgment from an auto accident can wreak havoc on a person's privilege to drive. Once the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) receives notice of an unpaid judgment due to an auto accident that resulted in

a. death

b. injury; and/or

c.  property damages greater than $10002

the driver found at fault, may receive a license suspension.3 Persons in Sophia's situation are not without hope in fighting a license suspension or regaining their privilege to drive once a license suspension occurs.

Defense To Texas Driver's License Suspension Resulting From An Unpaid Judgment

A person has a defense to a license suspension, if proof of insurance is provided to DPS showing that driver had:

a. liability insurance covering the vehicle involved at the time the accident occurred;

b. an affidavit stating that the judgment debtor was insured by auto insurance at the time of the accident, the insurance company is liable to pay the judgment and the reason if known, why the judgment was not paid;

c. the original policy or if available, a certified copy of the auto insurance policy; and

d. any other document required by DPS to show the loss was covered by insurance at the time of the accident.4

Once DPS receives satisfactory proof that the judgment debtor had motor vehicle liability insurance at the time of the accident, the insurance company was authorized to issue insurance policies in the State of Texas at the time of the accident, and the insurer is liable to pay the judgment to the extent and amount required by law, the judgment debtor's license may not be suspended.  If already suspended, then DPS must reinstate the person's driving license.5

If not already suspended, DPS may not suspend a person's driver's license if the person submits proof that they have financial responsibility (SR-22)6 and the person obtained an order to pay the judgment in installments.7 A judgment debtor, after giving notice to the judgment creditor, may apply to the court to pay the judgment in installments.  The court may order installment payments and detail the amount and time of payment.8 However, failure to comply with the installment payments as established with the court could result in DPS suspension of driving privileges until the judgment is satisfied.9

Excuse From License Suspension Resulting From An Unsatisfied Judgment

If a judgment debtor receives consent from a judgment creditor, then they may be allowed to continue their driving privileges. To receive a continuation of driving privileges, DPS will need written consent from the judgment creditor consenting to a continuation of the driving privileges submitted in form SR-8410 and proof that the judgment debtor now has proof of financial responsibility, a SR-22.11

Regaining Your Driving License After Suspension

Once DPS suspends a license because of an unsatisfied judgment, the judgment creditor may regain their license if they provide proof the judgment was paid in full or satisfied.  To show this, DPS requires submission of a SR-11.12 Alternatively, if the judgment creditor works out a payment arrangement with the judgment creditor, DPS will want a SR-1913 as proof of the payment arrangement before lifting the suspension.

If ten years elapsed since the rendition of the liability judgment and a writ of execution was not issued to renew the judgment, then the judgment is now dormant. A dormant judgment may not be enforced unless revived.14 To obtain a license renewal after a judgment becomes dormant, DPS requires submission of form SR-88.15 DPS will require the payment of all reinstatement fees before a license is reinstated.  

If you are in a situation similar to Sophia, contact our firm to see how we may assist you in keeping or regaining your Texas driver's license.

Author's Information: Attorney Tracey A. Beecher represents persons accused of class c misdemeanors and city code ordinance violations within the City of Houston Municipal Courts, Harris County Justice of the Peace Courts and Fort Bend County Justice of the Peace Courts.  

Legal Disclaimer: Each person's situation and circumstances are unique. As such, this article is given to provide general information only. It is not legal advice nor is it intended as a substitute for legal counsel. Should the reader need legal advice or counsel, it is appropriate to seek the assistance of a licensed attorney.

 Citations and Resources

1 Image by Karolina Grabowska on Pixabay at https://pixabay.com/images/search/user:kaboompics%20key/     

2 Crash Suspension at https://www.dps.texas.gov/DriverLicense/CrashSuspension.htm  

3 Texas Transportation Code 601.332 (a) 

4 Texas Transportation Code 601.333 (a)

 5 Texas Transportation Code 601.333 (b)

6 A SR-22 must be provided by the insurance provider.  It is certified proof that a person maintains liability insurance.  See  https://www.dps.texas.gov/DriverLicense/SR22InsuranceCertificate.htm  

 7 Texas Transportation Code 601.336(a)

 8 Texas Transportation Code 601.335

 9 Texas Transportation Code 601.336 (c) 

10 Form SR-84 https://www.dps.texas.gov/InternetForms/Forms/SR-84.pdf   

11 Texas Transportation Code 601.334 (a) 

12 Form SR-11 https://www.dps.texas.gov/InternetForms/Forms/SR-11.pdf   

13 Form SR-19 https://www.dps.texas.gov/InternetForms/Forms/SR-19.pdf   

14 Texas Civil Practice  and Remedies Code 34.001(b) 

15 Form SR-88 https://www.dps.texas.gov/internetforms/Forms/SR-88.pdf  

Top Ten Excuses Given To Get Out of A Speeding Ticket And Why They Don't Work

'' found at  by  () used under  ()

10. “But I Am A Member Of The 100 Club”

Persons who give to the 100 Club do so to enable the charitable organization to raise funds to assist the dependents of law enforcement officers and firefighters who are killed or catastrophically injured in the line of duty in Houston and surrounding counties.   This excuse does not convince the officer to drop the ticket.  To do so would mean individuals who donate to the 100 club or similar charitable organizations would give the donor carte blanche rights to drive as they please and ignore the traffic laws. Furthermore, giving a threat to get a desired action is most likely to infuriate the threatened person.

9. “I Was Testing My Car”

This excuse relies on an unacceptable premise.  The excuse does not work because the underlying sentiment is one of guilt.  The driver in essence by stating “I was testing my car” implies he/she was speeding but the reason for the excessive speed was because he/she was testing the limits of what the vehicle was capable off. Another reason this excuse does not work is the statement gives the impression that the driver is using the public roadways as their private speedway to test the limits of their vehicle and is not considering the safety of others on the roadway.

8. “I am Generally A Good Driver Can You Give Me A Warning?”

The driver is telling the officer this one time I went over the speed limit but because they are generally a good driver they are asking for leniency and requesting a warning.  The excuse generally does not work because similar to the excuse “I was testing my  car” the underlying sentiment of this statement is guilt.

7. “Shouldn't You Be Going After Real Criminals”

The statement is classic deflection.  It does not say the driver is not guilty of the offense. Quite frankly the opposite is implied.  It's really thumbing the nose at the speed limit because what the driver is telling the officer is so what if I was speeding surely you must have bigger cases to catch criminals than this one little ticket.  It typically does not work, because it insults the officer in the job he/she is performing.  It makes it seem as though the enforcement of speed limits is a waste of time and the officer's time would be spent wisely going after some other form of crime.

6. “I Thought the Speed Limit Was More”

A mistaken speed limit is a relatable error.  No human being is immune from making a mistake. However, from the perspective of an officer tasked with enforcing the speed limit, this excuse implies the accused was not paying attention or was unaware of the speed limit.  The excuse does not work because mistake of law or fact is not an excuse or defense to a traffic ticket.  It is worthy to note that Texas class c misdemeanors such as speeding over a posted speed limit requires no mens rea (intention or knowledge of wrongdoing) to enable the State to prosecute. 

5. “I Am Sick and Just Want To Get Home”

Other alternatives to this is my child is sick or my family member (mother, father, brother, sister etc) is sick or in the hospital.  Unfortunately, officers are not able to decipher in most instances the veracity of this statement by just looking at an individual.  Some officers are willing to dismiss the ticket upon further verified proof in court. Others are of the opinion that when illness distracts a driver to the extent that traffic laws are ignored the driver, in that instance, should not operate a vehicle.

4. “I Have To Get To The Restroom”

The reason this excuse does not work is because a safer alternative exists. From the officer's perspective stopping somewhere before getting home and using a public restroom alleviates the problem.  It is safer than rushing on the public roadways, jeopardizing the driver's safety and the safety of other drivers just so the driver can get to the comfort of their home restroom.

3. “Someone Is Chasing Me”

With the rise of road rage, it is not impossible for a person to genuinely be in this situation. If a driver finds themselves in this situation, do not confront the other driver.  Take your safety seriously, find a crowded place to pull over and call the police.  The reason this excuse does not work well is because by the time someone is pulled over the alleged chaser is long gone.  Officers hear a variety of reasons each day as to why an accused should not get a citation.  It is also not uncommon for others to take this situation and lie to law enforcement to try and get out of a ticket. Unfortunately, this excuse without further backing sounds like any other excuse of someone trying to get out of a ticket.  

2. “I Sped Up To Get Away From The Crazy Driver Next To Me”

We have all been in this situation.  You find yourself near the driver who is weaving in and out of traffic, driving on the shoulder to avoid traffic and/or driving well above the posted speed limit.  The inclination is to find a safer spot on the roadway and you surely do not want to fall prey to their bad driving.  Thus, you do anything to get away from the Tasmanian Devil on wheels.  The reason the excuse does not work on law enforcement are safer alternatives exist in this situation as well.  A driver can slow down or pull over to get away from a bad driver. Engaging in unsafe driving practices to get away from a unsafe driver does not look well for the accused speeder.

1. “I Was Going With The Flow of Traffic”

The problem is the vague nature of the statement.  The statement does not deny guilt.  Rather it implies since the driver was going with the flow of traffic and going above the speed limit, then others on the roadway were violating the speed limit too. Thus, why weren't the other drivers stopped as well?  However, other persons breaking the law on the roadway will not deter the State from prosecuting those who are caught.

If you are the recipient of a speeding ticket and need assistance in keeping the offense off your record, contact our firm to find out how our representation in your case could be beneficial to your interests.

Author's Information: Attorney Tracey A. Beecher represents persons accused of class c misdemeanors and city code ordinance violations within the City of Houston Municipal Courts, Harris County Justice of the Peace Courts and Fort Bend County Justice of the Peace Courts.  

Legal Disclaimer: Each person's situation and circumstances are unique. As such, this article is given to provide general information only. It is not legal advice nor is it intended as a substitute for legal counsel. Should the reader need legal advice or counsel, it is appropriate to seek the assistance of a licensed attorney.

Photo: Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.