I Did A Bad Thing

Topic 32831 | Page 2

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Davy A.'s Comment
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I have indeed a lot of experience with tickets unfortunately. Although only one in a CMV , and the officer never submitted it. Theres no record of it at all. Luck of the Irish. I got a lawyer on that one, cost me 450.00. Obviously, get a quality lawyer to help.

It's not so much that they will get you off the ticket, although if there is administrative errors, it may be possible. Its simply a reduction in points which in turn reduces the speed.

It's also critical on how the state lists the citation on your record. Some give the actual speed while others list 10 to 15 over. Also, some states list the citation, not the adjudicated offense (the final result). In which case, it's a battle to get it corrected. I've had several tickets over the years that still had the original speed the officer assumed I was driving at, not the adjudicated speed.

If the lawyer has experience, they can work around the anti masking. There is some things that can be done, but not much.

Last speeding ticket I had was in the Vette, allegedly for 19 over. Officer wrote it for 9 over. I paid 650.00 to my lawyer. They got the ticket and citation completely removed, not adjudicated. No evidence of the stop at all. I paid an additional 100 dollars to a youth charity. Again luck played an important part, not a good strategy in life.

I had a lot of luck more than anything with the tickets I had prior to getting hired by Knight. But my record was clean of speeding tickets in the previous 3 years miraculously by the time I did get hired.

The biggest advice I could say is don't speed no matter what, err on the cautious side, it almost kept me from this career and cost me tens of thousands of dollars in fines and fees as well as a few visits to the jailhouse over the years.


Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards


Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.


Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

This is very embarrassing to me, but I really need some advice.

In December, I was going through a small town in Kansas at night. I came into town and saw a 35 mph speed limit sign. I slowed to 35. The next thing I see is a police car behind me with lights on. I pulled over and the officer told me I was doing 35 in a 20. Yeah, the dreaded 15 over. Of course, I got a citation. I didn’t see a sign for 20 mph, but I don’t doubt that it was there. I just missed it.

Next day, I reported it to my company and was told if I couldn’t get the ticket reduced by at least 1 mph they would have to let me go, for insurance reasons. I’m just sick about this because I don’t want to lose my job and I had a spotless record which is now ruined. So I hired a local attorney and he talked to the city prosecutor. The city prosecutor won’t budge on this, saying he has a zero tolerance policy for CDL drivers in a commercial vehicle. I even offered to pay double the fine for this if I could get just a 1 mph reduction so I could keep my job, but the answer was no. My only choice, according to my attorney, is to plead not guilty, go to trial and beg the judge for mercy. I don’t dispute the citation. I made a huge mistake and am willing to accept the consequences except for losing my job. If I get fired for this, nobody else will hire me with a 15 over on my record.

Any advice on how I should handle this in order to try and save my job?

I can only give you my perspective as I dealt with a "Careless Driving" charge 2-3 years ago. The citation was issued in a Pilot truck parking lot. When I called a friend, who's a very successful attorney, he said I should go to the traffic court, plead my case to the judge, just as I'd explained it to him. Hiring him (in his mind) would be very expensive and unnecessary. Keep in mind, this friend has known me for many years and knows my demeanor and my ability to handle professional situations and interactions.

So, on court day, I did go. I wore a suit and tie (presentation matters), waited my turn and then went into see the judge. I explained to the judge the scenario, had pictures of the scene and simply told him that while I admitted I had done wrong, I simply didn't think my actions rose to the level of "careless driving." I also added that the charge would negatively impact my pay, that I was already taking the day off without pay, to attend court and this could possibly jeopardize future employment opportunities.

The judge asked the officer if he remembered the incident. Although this officer had tons of paperwork with him, and had been in with the judge for quite a while (I assume adjudicating other citations) he said he didn't remember my incident. The judge was very polite, dismissed the case and thanked me for my service in my job.

My point is that; if you're in a situation where you can calmly and effectively plead your case, there is sometimes a sympathetic ear sitting in the decision-maker's chair. While I'm obviously not a Lawyer and I'm not suggesting you should do what I did, I would be asking myself; what have I got to lose if I fight this? AND, what will I lose if I don'tfight this?

I hope this helps.


Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.


Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Harvey C.'s Comment
member avatar

Bruce, as I recall, part of our reason for driving is to help put your grandson through college. I sure would hope that a judge would see that the overall penalty for this citation isn't justified and maybe even thank you for your kindness.

I only went to traffic court once (about 35 years ago) and the officer apologized for the hassle. I didn't see that coming.

Lance F.'s Comment
member avatar

I was able to do a street view and I "drove" the city of Lyons. It appears speed limit on Grand/hwy 14/96 is 35 while you head north until you get to Lyon St where it drops to 20.

0727656001674749910.jpg 20 mph speed limit is only for 2 blocks because it goes up to 30 mph once you get to main st


Looks like a radar trap to me. I believe these are illegal. If you plan to fight it I would go back to the area and take pictures. Print them out @ the local store and have a testimony ready for what happened that night that's the truth or damn believable for the judge.

Ryan B.'s Comment
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Variable speeds like that and then a cop sitting right in the middle of it...

Revenue generator.

Bird-One's Comment
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Sure hope the city prosecutor has a zero tolerance for any vehicle going 15 over, but then again big truck big money. Sorry this is happening to you Bruce. Hope you are able to get it resolved. Gotta be stressful.

Harvey C.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm recalling a bit more about my old incident many years ago, a friend had shared a book her son used when he fought a ticket. I don't recall the specifics but remember there was some suggestion about requesting copies of traffic speed studies but that may have been more for citations for traveling at "unsafe" speeds vs. exceeding the posted speed limit.

This small town makes pretty heavy use of a Facebook page a thttps://www.facebook.com/City-of-Lyons-107051117573171/ and I wonder if there would be any benefit of how this city's speed trap comes across as them being a very unfriendly town not worth stopping at (except at stop signs, of course).

BK's Comment
member avatar

Hey everyone, thanks so much for all the helpful advice, comments and ideas. I like Steve’s suggestion about wearing a suit and tie to the court date. Now I can try out my new suit before my funeral which is why I got it in the first place.

I had a good discussion with my attorney today about the situation. He is optimistic that the judge will work with me on this to preserve my job. The judge is a “lay judge”. In other words, a judge but not a lawyer. He is well known to my lawyer, who has to appear before him on a regular basis. I’m told he is a reasonable man.

But thanks for all the support and encouragement everyone.

Rob T.'s Comment
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Lance the way Kansas law is written this speed drop is perfectly legal, as well as in most other states. Atleast from the street view photos I added the signs do not appear to be obstructed. It's possible at night they're not very visible but I'm doubtful of that because they have so many light posts nearby, unless the poles themselves obstructed view. I've never traveled that stretch of road so I'm taking a wild guess that it has something to do with the school and park being so close. It still doesn't make sense to me though since we've all driven many roads through small towns that go past schools and parks that the speed limit doesn't drop unless it's a school zone (during school hours)

Harvey what you mention in regards to traffic studies applies in California but maybe not others. In Cali they must have traffic studies done to warrant a slower speed on highways than what state statute says to prevent towns from making speeds drop with intent of being a cash cow. I had a lengthy reply and my phone froze up and I lost it. In Cali if the speed limit drops more than what can be reasonably expected the case will be dismissed if there hasn't been a traffic study in the past 5 years in most circumstances. I was unable to find what Kansas law says about frequency of studies. I did however upload a pic (in my profile) of a brochure from KDOT that states how speed limits are set in Kansas,

Glad to hear that your conversation with your attorney went well. Even if you can't get it completely dismissed and just getting it knocked down a tad will not have too negative of an effect on your career. Atleast with him saying that it's a common thing in that town he likely knows what does or doesn't work in regards to getting it knocked down or dismissed.


Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar
I can try out my new suit

I can't promise the suit will make the difference, but whatever you do, wear a power tie. :)

Like your situation, my Judge was very casual. Heck, he wasn't even wearing a tie. My Wife thought it was funny that everyone (from the time we entered the courthouse) kept asking if I was an Attorney. Spend the money on a haircut, arrive on time and be patient (I waited hours and was the last case the judge heard...the Bailiff apologized for that).

Too many Defendants don't take their situations seriously (most don't even show up!). Many others want to claim some kind of injustice under the law. Your objective is to keep your job, not spearhead a crusade for the undisciplined.

I sincerely hope this works out for you.

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