If you’re like most Americans, then you rely on your car as your primary form of transportation. Because of this, anything that threatens your ability to legally drive, such as a penalty for a traffic law violation, has the potential to seriously disrupt your life. Here at Jones, Childers, Donaldson & Webb, PLLC, we want to help you avoid these penalties and stay on the road, and we offer the right traffic law help to do just that. In this article, we’ll go over a few of the most useful strategies that we use in traffic law cases to help you start thinking about how to defend yourself.
- Point Out Missing or Weak Evidence. All traffic offenses can be broken down into distinct elements that the courts have to prove. For instance, to charge you with a distracted driving violation, the courts will have to prove that 1) you were driving, and 2) that you were using a prohibited device. If we at Jones, Childers, Donaldson & Webb, PLLC think that the evidence for any element of your case is weak, we will draw the judge’s attention to that gap–if the prosecution can’t prove that all the necessary elements are present, then the judge should find you not guilty.
- Prove that You Made a Mistake of Fact. In legal terms, there are two types of mistakes that are associated with traffic law violations. The first type is known as mistakes of law, which is the legal way of saying that you didn’t know that your actions were illegal. The other type is known as mistakes of fact, which are reasonable errors based on circumstances. To give a practical example, saying that you didn’t know you were supposed to stop at stop signs (mistake of law) is unlikely to win you any sympathy, but arguing that you couldn’t see the stop sign due to some fallen debris (mistake of fact) can get your case dismissed if you can provide enough evidence to back it up.
- Challenge Subjective Conclusions. A third strategy that we at Jones, Childers, Donaldson & Webb, PLLC may employ in traffic law cases is to challenge the officer’s subjective conclusion. For instance, if you received a ticket for making an unsafe left turn, our team can present reasons why the turn was safe and argue against the officer’s interpretation. How useful this strategy, or any strategy, will be in your case will depend a lot on your particular circumstances, so we encourage you to consult with a traffic law attorney to determine the best way to make your case.