Single Status Update
Narrowly avoided a reckless driving conviction today for speeding on the interstate (late at night; very few people on the road); the judge knocked down 19 mph off my speed after I had already gotten another 4 from a speedometer calibration. 83/55->60/55. Cost only $99, which was a huge surprise and the entire experience was very humbling, but I get the feeling I dont ever want to step foot in that courtroom again, hehe. I also took along a driver improvement class certificate, my driving record (which is very good; +5 points in this state is as high as you can go, with only +1 given each year if you meet certain criteria, and is what I had walking into the courtroom), and a letter from my boss at work saying I'm a valuable, reliable employee. I just told the truth: 'I made a mistake. I admitted to speeding, but mentioned it was an unfamiliar area and that I simply wasn't paying proper attention as I should've. (I didnt tell the judge this, not pertinent I suppose, but I had sped up to pass somebody then sped up more when another car got up on my ass before I finished passing the first car) I recognized afterward that there was a problem and that I was it, so I took actions to correct myself,' at which point I gave him the stuff as I listed each document off one-by-one, which is kinda good when most other people came in there with either a calibration or a driving school thing, handing him one-or-two things and here I have 4, even if one was a mostly worthless letter from my boss, but character witness stuff is always important, to be able to have somebody to speak for you. He didn't read it, lol. But as one of the last people to walk in front of him (thank God he wasn't having a bad day and that nobody pissed him off before me, hehe), perhaps it helped my case to have been clearly taken seriously, which he commented on my taking it seriously as part of the reason I got off the hook.
It pays to do get all your ducks in a row before walking in that building :) But I should have thought to do some good community service before-hand. Might have been totally dismissed (prolly not); never know...
I did feel somewhat compelled to at least thank the officer for doing his job before walking away from the stand; (since I was standing right next to him after all) as bad as this could have been for me, it would've been worse if I had lost control of my car (for any reason; a flat could happen at any moment and adding speed doesn't help things) and hit someone or something.
Second-best part though: no lawyer. That would have easily cost me upwards of $500, but it is always good to ask them for some free info when you get the chance, to better know how the legal system in your area affects you and how you can best work within it to better yourself. Lotta people at least in my area don't realize that often a phone call with general info covered is totally free, plus the other hundred lawyers in a 50 mile radius you can call after the first pretty much give a wealth of info if you just ask the right questions ;D