Recently was issued a ticket for 79 mph in 70. I was actually going much faster than this, but officer courteously dropped it to 9 mph over on the spot. I know, it's my fault, but any ticket at all is no good for my license. Chances of this getting reduced to improper equipment, or at a lower speed? Additionally, can the police officer RAISE my actual speed in court if I contest this as “not guilty”? If I plead not guilty, it would be very unfortunate to be charged with my original speed (of about 95 mph). The state is North Carolina.
– Probably was actually going 95 in a 70, and interstate was clear with no vehicles around me. The ticket states under the category of Speed with “P 98”. Not sure what this lingo means but I assume it could be the speed the officer originally clocked me at, before he reduced it. The ticket is only charging me with 79 in 70, however.
-Vehicle is 15 years old
– I only have one other moving violation, which was reduced to improper equipment after taking a defensive driving course (2 years ago). Currently, my license record is clean.
Speeding 79/70 triggers a discretionary suspension; 74/70 does not. My advice is to avoid that by picking one of the options I had spoken of previously. As for the cop (actually the DA) amending the citation to reflect the higher speed the cop COULD have charged, I don't think that's in the cards. I think the DA could do so lawfully, but I've never seen it done. What I have seen is the DA take a hard position when you ask for any kind of relief and he sees the concession the cop has already given. More reason to have a lawyer finesse this for you, IMHO.
Hi Terence. Thanks for the reply! I believe you can only take the defensive driving course once every three years to my knowledge. I don't think I can re-take this course yet? Please correct me if I'm wrong. However, considering I was already travelling much higher than what the officer actually ticketed me for (he KNOWS that I was going faster), I'm not sure it is worth it to contest this ticket? There is always the possibility he could change the charge to 95+ in a 70 during the court hearing, correct?
Additionally, according to the NC Safe Driver Incentive Plan, the insurance premiums should not raise, as it falls under the category of…
“Speeding 10 mph or less over the
posted speed limit; provided all of the
following are true:
� The violation did not occur in a school
� There is not another moving traffic
violation for the experience period
(an isolated Prayer for Judgement
Continued [PJC] will not count as a
prior conviction for the purpose of this
Your knowledge is greatly appreciated! I am not the expert here, but wanting to be actively involved with my options on what to do. Thanks again.
Alec: Thanks for your q. Try getting this one dropped to IE (improper equip) also. You may have to do a driving school again or something. Failing that, ask the DA to reduce to 74/70. 79/70 is still too fast to avoid insurance points (under the NC Safe Driver Incentive Plan). Last option would be to ask the judge for a “PJC” (Prayer For Judgment Continued) which is sort of like a “pardon” for this. Thing is, you can't have used one, and no one in your household can't have used one, in the past three years. As for a trial, IMHO, not worth the effort. Cops are specially trained to estimate speed and, in my own experience, their word, therefore, is often given a bit more weight than non-cop “lay” testimony. I do believe the cop can testify as to what he saw, meaning your original speed. Bottom line, follow the advice above and consider it a win. You can get where you need to go without trials. Don't run the risk or waste the time.