I didn't even know I was speeding, I said, but to no avail. I was cruising to work and was behind other vehicles I thought. In fact, I know I was somewhere close to other vehicles going the same speed or close to the same speed. I could see them ahead of me. I guess he can't pull us all over. You see, I usually leave the house around 7:15 on Mondays to make it to work around 7:40 to 7:45, but on this Monday, July 11, 2011, I had a meeting down town so I didn't leave until 8:30. I sat through the meeting as best as I could (adult ADHD doesn't help much) and when it was over I got my parking pass validating and headed to Southridge. It was a couple minutes until 11:00 when I saw him heading towards Charleston on 119. I was just coming up to the Jefferson Road exit and less than a mile to my exit. You would have thought I was an escaped murder by the way he came after me. He turned his car sideways and drove through the medium like I was anyway. By the time his back wheels found the payment he rubber in both lanes. I thought for sure he was radioed for an accident or something, but of course, he was shortly pulling me over. I was convinced that I had unknowingly ran someone off the road or worse.
I was starting to sweat as he came up to my window. I knew the cuffs would soon be on me. "Can I help you, officer?" "License and registration, please." "Do you realize that you were just doing 65 miles per hour in a posted 50 mile and hour zone?" "No sir, I didn't realize it at all, is that all I did?" "What do you mean?" "I thought something else must have happened by the way you spun through the medium to come after me." Of course this statement wasn't further commented on and the next thing I know I was holding a $165 ticket.
For the next 4 weeks I called everyone I knew to try and work some magic to get out of the ticket, but apparently a city of Charleston ticket is hard to get out of. I was determined to not have this ticket go against my driving record and make my already expensive auto insurance even higher so off to court I went.
Tuesday, August 30th at 3:30 was the hearing. I was determined to be early, but one thing lead to another at work and I finally parked in the metered parking at the Charleston Municipal Auditorium at precisely 3:30 and put 4 quarters into the meter for 2 hours of time so after my 5 minute walk I opened the doors at 3:35. The judges clerk, noticeably upset with my tardiness, was already calling out names of the "defendants". I was amazed at the number of people. Including those in orange, there was well over 100 and me being cursed with a last name starting with "R" was forced to wait through 3/4 of all the cases.
I realized after about 5 minutes into the proceedings that I may have made a mistake and maybe should have just paid the ticket in the first place. The judge took those in orange first and as she called the first lady up a Charleston PD removed her cuffs. She raised her right hand and plead not guilty to simple possession of cocaine. I was shocked. I thought this was traffic court! Five additional people plead not guilty to drug possession, weapon possession, trespassing, building code violations, and battery. I was relieved when those were over. I was starting to wonder what people were thinking of me. I did have a suit on which was far more than most of the people in the room. Two hours later I finally hear the judge say, "Jonathan Roop, please approach the bench." You see, after two hours of sitting there listening to all of the other accused argue with her I had all but figured out my entire case. I was so sure of my self I knew I could easily win this. And here is how it went down.
Judge: "You have been charged with speeding 65-50 which is punishable by a $100 fine and all applicable court costs and no jail time." Because the punishment consists of no jail time then you will not be afforded a public defender." "How do you plead?"
Me: "Before for I....."
Judge: "Guilty or Not Guilty"
Me: "I was hoping...."
Judge: (holding up her hand) "Guilty or not guilty, son."
Me: "I guess guilty, but I was...."
Judge: "Since you have confessed to the crime then you need to sign here, here, and initial here. You will be assessed all fines, but I will allow you to take the defensive driving course so it will not be put on your record at the DMV." "Please step out of the gate."
Two hours of practicing and I didn't even get to tell my side of the story at all. I couldn't believe it. I was so sure of myself. I knew I would leave there and have no ticket at all. Once again I was wrong. haha
To end this quickly, I walked out of the court room 2 hours and 10 minutes later. I was walking to my car and saw the little parking natzi putting a parking ticket on my window. I was 10 minutes late for crying out loud. I ran to him and told him my whole story of what I had been through. I told him how I was mixed in with drug dealers and wife beaters, but that wasn't good enough. Five more dollars down the drain. LOL. Oh well. I hope this gave someone a good laugh.
You are the potter I am the clay Mold me and make me This is what I pray