Stoplight / Stop Sign Tickets
The Criminal Defense Team of Hatch, Little & Bunn handles all Wake County traffic and criminal charges.
Stop violations can result in court costs, fines, and significant increases in your insurance premiums for years. As moving violations, they can also lead to a revocation of your license. They may also cause you to miss work several times as you sit through court sessions waiting just to plead your innocence to the court.
Don’t be tempted to just pay off your stop violation ticket. First, paying it off is pleading responsible. As moving violations, pleading responsible can accrue license points AND insurance points. This can mean serious increases in your insurance premium for years to come or revocation of your license leaving you without a means of transportation. For example, in cases where you are charged with a stop violation as part of an accident, we may be able to negotiate with the district attorney to have your case dismissed pursuant to any damages resulting from the accident being paid by your insurance provider. This way, you’re not needlessly pleading responsible and paying costs and fines for a case that you can have dismissed.
Many people also believe that simply pleading responsible and using a Prayer for Judgment Continued (PJC) is their best option when dealing with this type of case. However, a PJC should only be used in certain circumstances and as a last resort. It’s important to first note that you only get one PJC every three years per household for insurance purposes, and you get two every five years for purposes of the DMV. Before using your PJC, which you may need more down the road, let an experienced Criminal Defense Team look over your case and asses any potential defenses that you may have at your disposal.
For example, did the police officer actually see you run the stop sign or stop light? Was there anything impeding his or her view or ability to see what actually happened? Was the stop sign duly erected by the state as required by under the law? Was the stop light malfunctioning? Can the police officer appropriately articulate in court and on the stand exactly what he or she recalls from that day, having written hundreds or even thousands of these tickets during their career? You may have more defenses and options than you think in these cases.
Even if you know you are responsible for a stop violation, the State has the burden of proving their case against you beyond a reasonable doubt and you still have rights that need to be protected. When you walk in to that courtroom, the State will have an attorney representing it and ready to prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law. Make sure that you even the playing field by hiring an attorney of your own who will be ready to combat the State and protect you and your rights.