Sarah has a lock-in at the school. I went to pick her up at midnight and noted a police officer speed trapping (a practice I feel is a waste of tax payer’s money–follow anyone long enough and they are going to do something wrong). I pick up Sarah and we are having great father/daughter chat, laughs and good quality time. Turn on the blue lights to ruin the mood. Oh. Sarah is in the front seat which is a no-no at her age and she says, “Should I move?” to which I said, “no” of course. Officer comes to the car and explains that I ran a 4-way stop. It’s after midnight and the stop sign he is referring to is on a two lane road. No other cars around. He says I slowed but did not stop which I may have did a rolling stop but I put no one in harms way because there were no cars on the road! I am a victom of some young punk cop trying to fill a quota. I wouldn’t be so upset about it if I didn’t feel completely victomized.
Here’s the rub. It’s only a $15 ticket. BUT there are $83.50 pre-court charges so the total comes to $98.50. That’s the hundred dollars I needed to fix the dryer. I don’t exactly have money to be pissing away on some cop trying to make big numbers. It gets worse. TN has a point system. If you lose 12 points off your license then your license can be revoked. This fool stop sign is worth 4 points! If I am going to lose a third of the points off my license I want to be racing to some meeting that I’m late to and blatantly run some red light at a major intersection!
I am a good driver. I’m alert and have great reflexes. I drive a little fast but mostly obey all other laws (Sarah in the front seat is where I fudge). I pull over for emergency vehicles while watching others just stop in the road. I see moronic behavior go up punished on the road while I am reamed for a traffic violation at a time of night when all the rules should change anyway.
I was in such a good mood. Sarah and I were having such good talk. Cathy and I were planning on lounging in bed and sharing laughs. This moron that didn’t have the decency to let me off with a warning (which is what post-midnight at that intersection should have been) had nothing but negative effects on me. He did not make me a better or more cautious driver as I spent most of my day lead footing it in anger. I drove distracted as I kept fretting over and over the situation. My productivity today was killed because I had no energy and lost all cares and couldn’t get my mind off of how to handle this. I decided no longer to freely volunteer any time to Knoxville. That means no more free juggling shows no matter how good the cause. There was no positive to come from this but to pad the KPDs budget.
So, what do I do? On Monday do I requistion the squard car’s video tape to see how badly I did or did not run the sign? Or does that preserve evidence that otherwise would be discarded? Do I just pay the fine and watch my insurance rates go through the roof? Do I go to court and if I do what do I plead? Guilty? Not Guilty? No content? The sick thing here is even if I was innocent it still would cost me $200 or more to prove it. The police could randomly hand out false tickets and make a profit.
Why wasn’t this twit out making our city safer instead of harassing good people?