New Jersey Drivers Use These Excuses to Get Out of Speeding Tix
If you've been driving in New Jersey for any length of time, you've probably been pulled over by the police.
Speeding may well be the most common reason you get pulled over, but there are many others. I was pulled over and ticketed in Stafford Township because the light above my license plate wasn't working.
You might get pulled over if your registration is expired (happened to me in another state), maybe you didn't use your turn signals, or maybe you were caught talking on your handheld device.
It is during these moments, that New Jersey people become some of the best comedy acts alive. Funny, it can take me an hour to come up with creative things to write about, but when I'm pulled over, my only challenge is to decide which excuse to use when the officer reaches my car.
With that, I asked some of my police friends for some of the excuses they've been given. None wanted to be identified for this story, but they shared some good ones.
One excuse that came up more than once is the "sovereign citizen claim." In simple terms, the person is claiming that they live under self-rule separate from America. If you watch On-Patrol Live or COPS, you've probably seen this once or twice. Police say this never works.
The bathroom excuse is another that's used often. "I'm rushing home, because I need to use the restroom." This one rarely works because they say there are many opportunities to pull into a fast-food place or gas station, so this isn't believable.
"I don't understand why you're pulling me over; I was going with the flow of traffic." While that may be true, if you were speeding, you might be the one they chose to pull over.
Finally, this was the subject of another recent article, "I was only going seven miles an hour over. That doesn't count." For as long as I've been driving, I've always heard people say that you have a 7-mile-an-hour buffer.
This is a tricky one. Take a ride on the Parkway, and watch as car after car passes you...while YOU'RE doing 70. I'm told that there is some truth to that, though it's unofficial, and is not a legit defense. Police tend to look the way if you are moving with the flow of traffic. However, if you are going even one mile an hour over, you can be ticketed.
The officers I spoke to, all agreed that attitude can play a big role in the result of your interaction. Be honest, if you were speeding, why direct anger at the police? Turn off your radio and keep your hands on the steering wheel.
Tell the officer if you need to reach for your credentials. Cops want to go home after work. They don't know you. Put yourself in their shoes. Making them comfortable goes a long way. Ask the officer for a break. Whining, crying, and yelling accomplishes nothing.
Your interaction with that officer can make a difference in court if you do get a ticket. Many times, prosecutors rely on the officer, when deciding whether or not to downgrade your offense.
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