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Crimes v. Infractions

Deferring a Ticket

Moving v. Non-moving

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The moving violations that I represent clients on are: DUI, Physical control, Vehicular homicide, Vehicular assault, Reckless driving, Racing, Embracing, Hit and run (injury, death, or occupied vehicle), Attempting to elude a police vehicle, Driving while driving privilege suspended or revoked, Reckless endangerment of roadway workers, Driver under twenty-one driving or being in physical control of a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol, Driving or in physical control of commercial motor vehicle while having alcohol in system, Open container violation (driver), Negligent driving in the first degree, Negligent driving in the second degree, Hit and run (unattended vehicle or property), Disobey road sign, Disobey signalman, officer, or firefighter, Disobey school patrol, Speed too fast for conditions, Speed in excess of maximum limit, Speeding in a school zone, Failure to stop, Failure to yield right of way, Failure to keep to the right, Wrong way on a one-way street or rotary traffic island, Improper lane change or travel, Straddling or driving over centerline, Driving on the wrong side of the road, Crossing divider, Improper entrance to or exit from freeway, High occupancy vehicle lane violation, Improper overtaking or passing, Passing stopped school bus, Passing stopped private carrier bus, Following to closely, Following fire apparatus, Crossing fire hose, Driving on sidewalk, Driving through safety zone, Driving with wheels off roadway, Impeding traffic, Improper turn, Prohibited turn, Failure to signal or improper signal, Improper backing, Unlawful operation of motorcycle on roadway, Reckless endangerment, Failure to maintain control, Violation of license restriction(s), Violation of instruction permit restrictions, Violation of out-of-service order, Obstructed vision or control, Carrying persons or animals outside of vehicle, Carrying passenger in towed vehicle, Coasting on downgrade, Violation of child restraint requirements, Carrying child under the age of five years old on motorcycle, Carrying passenger improperly on motorcycle, No helmet, goggles, mirrors, windshield or face shield, Motorcycle handlebars above maximum height, Operating moped on freeway or sidewalk, Illegal, improper, defective, or missing vehicle equipment, Driving without lights, Failure to dim lights, Operating motorcycle without lights, No lamp, reflector, or flag on extended load, Unnecessary noise, Wearing earphones or viewing television in vehicle, Permitting illegal vehicle operation, Failure to secure load, Spilling load, Improper towing.
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$199 Flat Fee On Most Infractions
1.  Be Polite.  Apart from just being a good idea in general, being polite can have a direct effect on your case. If it comes down to negotiating with a Prosecutor for a lesser charge, the worst thing you can have on a ticket is an officer's note saying the Defendant was rude.

2.  Don't admit you were speeding.  Officers will often ask if you know why you were stopped or how fast you were going.  If you admit you were speeding, it will make my job of getting your ticket thrown considerably more difficult.

3.  Think safety.  Traffic stops are among the most dangerous activities a police officer can engage in.  The reason is simple: they have no idea what they are about to get into or whether there is a weapon in the vehicle.  As a result, officers will be especially concerned for their safety when approaching your vehicle.  To relieve some of this concern, keep your hands in plain sight on the steering wheel.  Avoid the temptation to start digging for your license, insurance card and registration, there will be plenty of time to gather those documents.

4.  Don’t make unnecessary statements.  In my experience, there is almost nothing you can say that will not hurt you in some fashion- even seemingly innocent statements.  If you are stopped by a police officer, he is investigating you for a crime or infraction; treat the contact that way.  You are required to provide certain information like your name, driver’s license, registration, proof of insurance etc.  Anything else you say can AND WILL be used against you – so politely decline to answer any other questions.  There are a million ways to do this but try something like, “I’ve been advised not to answer any questions like these and am choosing not to answer.”  There is no way you are going to talk your way out of a charge if the officer thinks he has grounds to arrest – so don’t try, it will only end up hurting you.

A common negotiating tactic is to take advantage of people’s natural desire to “Fill the Void” when one side of the conversation takes a long pause.  Experienced officers will employ this simple tactic to extract more statements from the person they are investigating.  Don’t fall for it, it's just a trick.

5.  Don’t bother asking to see the Radar or Laser result.  I am often asked whether the officer has to show you the Radar or Laser result.  They don't.  The better way to approach the situation is to be polite, take your ticket, then plan that we are going to fight it in Court.

6.  Don’t Argue with the Cop.  There is a time and a place for everything.  The time to fight the ticket is at Court not on the roadway.  Arguing with the police officer  as he is giving you the ticket will not accomplish anything other than making a bad situation even worse.

7.  Check the Contested Hearing box.  There are three ways to respond to a ticket and they are all listed on the back side of the green ticket you received.  The top box says that you admit the violation and are going to pay the whole fine.  The middle box (Mitigation Hearing) says that you admit the violation but want to pay a smaller fine.  The last box is to request a Contested Hearing.  Check this box!  Doing anything else is ADMITTING GUILT.  We can t fight the ticket if you ve already admitted you did it.

8.  Mail in the ticket.  Send in your ticket with 15 days.  If you wait longer than that, the Court may well enter a Default Judgment against you.  This can have bad consequences and is totally avoidable.  If you missed your 15 day window, call me and I may be able to salvage the situation.

9.  Witnesses and written statements.  Often, the only witness for the defense is the Defendant him or her self.  If you are lucky enough to have a passenger with you at the time of the stop, have them write down what they remember.  It may be weeks before we get to Court and memories fade.  Taking a few minutes to preserve that recollection can be invaluable at times.

10.  Contact a lawyer right away.  Being stopped by the police is stressful.  Contact a lawyer immediately and discuss your case.  Having answers to questions as basic as “What is going to happen?” or “How much will this cost?” can really reduce your stress level.   Even knowing that you are not powerless against the system can be a big relief.

10 Tips if you are stopped for Speeding

Copyright © 2012 The Cahoon Law Office - All rights reserved.

Disclaimer: Traffic Infraction or other driving defense information presented on this site should not be considered formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer or attorney client relationship. Any results set forth here were dependent on the facts of that case and the results will differ from case to case. Please contact a Washington State driving defense lawyer or attorney for a free initial consultation. This web site is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the State of Washington.

My driving defense law firm serves the following Western Washington communities, among others: Island County, Snohomish County, Skagit County, Alderwood, Arlington, Bellingham, Brier, Darrington, Edgewood, Edmonds, Everett, Gold Bar, Granite Falls, Index, Lake Stevens, Lynnwood, Marysville, Mill Creek, Monroe, Tulalip, Mukilteo, Silvana, Smokey Point, Snohomish, Stanwood, Sultan, Woodway, Burlington, Clearlake, Concrete, Hamilton, La Conner, Lyman, Marbelmount, Mount Vernon, Sedro Wooley, Lake Forest Park
, South Whidbey.

I also serve the following Zip Codes: 98011, 98012, 98020, 98021, 98026, 98033, 98034, 98036, 98037, 98043, 98046, 98052, 98072, 98082, 98087, 98201, 98203, 98204, 98205, 98206, 98207, 98208, 98213, 98223, 98239, 98241, 98249, 98251, 98252, 98253, 98223, 98224, 98225, 98226, 98227, 98228, 98229, 98256, 98258, 98259, 98270, 98271, 98272, 98273, 98274, 98275, 98282, 98287, 98290, 98291, 98292, 98293, 98294, 98296
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Arlington, WA 98223

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Arlington, WA 98223
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