Friday, March 28, 2014
Jackass for the Day...
So I've been known to be a little heavy on the pedal. I've had more than 1 speeding ticket in my lifetime and I'm certainly not bragging about it. I do think my mind got a little warped during the 7 years we lived in Kansas City. I had 2 attorneys on my cul-de-sac that "fixed" speeding tickets. So, if I got one; I just put it in their mailbox (rotating turns of course) and then I would get a bill from them when it was all said and done. No points added to my insurance--life was good. And then we moved to Georgia...
I have had 3 speeding tickets since we moved here and I don't have any neighbor attorneys. So, with my first ticket, I just followed the directions, went online and paid the fine. These last 2 speeding tickets I got within a few weeks of each other. I planned to go online like before and pay the fine but then my cousin Kate totally changed my mind.
She was talking about how she had to go to court one morning for a ticket. I laughed at her and said, "You're going to court to fight a ticket? Are you innocent?" And she said "No, but that doesn't matter. You still show up for court anyway because the Prosecutor almost always offers you a deal." I said, "WHAT? I have never heard of that!" And she said, "Yes--when they call your name, you approach the Prosecuter and you say these exact words: 'What are my options?' They will usually reduce your ticket from 75 in a 55 to like 69 in a 55 or something like that. Anyway--your points won't be so high so it's worth it."
So I leave this conversation feeling elated about my new knowledge and I make plans to attend traffic court for both of my tickets. My first court appearance was yesterday morning at 9am. Let me walk you through it...
I arrived 10 minutes early and went through the security checkpoint. I went up a flight of stairs where I was told to sign in. There was a beautiful girl, mid-twenties signing in ahead of me and when she was done she took a seat on the bench outside the courtroom. I signed in and then looked around for any sort of directions on what to do next. I said to the girl, "Are we supposed to sit out here or enter the courtroom?" She said, "I don't know--all it said was to sign your name." I look at my watch and it is now exactly 9am, which is the time court starts according to my ticket. I'm kind of panicking over what to do and I finally say to her, "Let's just go in; I'll go first--you can follow me." So we enter the VERY crowded courtroom where every seat in the back and middle is filled. We know we have to walk up to the front row. The Prosecuter is standing at the podium up front, addressing the crowd. He completely stops talking mid-sentence and glares at me and my new friend as we walk down the seemingly endless aisle. He remains silent until we are seated in the front row, situated, have put our purses down, etc. He then gives me a nod as if to say, "You done?" It was 9:00 on the dot; it's not like we were even 5 minutes late. Rude!
So I have turned my cell phone off but it's still on vibrate because I have 3 children and I need to be accessible should the school call. My phone lets off one quick vibrate from the bottom of my purse. The ONLY way he heard it was because I was sitting in the damn first row. So AGAIN..he stops to address the crowd: "Ladies and Gentlemen; if you will please take your cellphones out right now and turn them OFF. My own cellphone has been turned off. I can assure you that if your cell phone goes off at any time during traffic court, you WILL be held in contempt of court." My mouth drops open and I turn to look at my new friend and whisper, "Are you freaking kidding me? If Rocky Branch Elementary calls me because my 5 year old has a fever; I'm gonna be handcuffed and taken away? I DARE them!"
So this Prosecuter goes on to spew out more sarcastic, belittling comments. Here's another one I remember: "Ladies and Gentlemen--if you are here today with a traffic ticket and you don't see your ticketing officer present and therefore assume you are getting off--you have seen one too many movies."
So 2 hours go by and finally my name is called. I walk up to face the Prosecuter with my nicest smile. I hand him my ticket and say in my sweetest voice, "Hello Sir. What are my options?" He looks at me with utter disgust and replies, "What are your options?" I say, "Yes Sir." To which he replies, "Your options are money order, cashiers check or credit card."
Let me tell you how much I wanted to have a word with Miss Kate when I left that courthouse. She's lucky I love her SO much!! ;)
Posted by prenni5 at 2:17 PM