Dismissed As Quickly As Enraged

, , , , | | Legal | August 9, 2019

(I have gotten a ticket for supposedly not coming to a full stop before making a turn. Instead of paying the fine, I decide to go to traffic court to see if I can get it reduced by explaining what happened. While sitting in the gallery waiting for the judge to handle other cases, I can see that he is pretty strict and I start wondering if I’ve made a wise choice by going to court. I really become concerned when the next person, a young man around my age, is called by the court clerk and his charge is read.)

Judge: “You stupid little [expletive]! Didn’t I tell you what would happen if you appeared in my courtroom again?”  

(The judge carries on like this for a few more minutes while the young man stands there looking miserable. I can see that the judge is getting madder and madder. The young man apparently has a poor driving record and has been in this same courtroom several times before. Finally, the judge tells him that his license is suspended and to get the h*** out of his courtroom. While this is going on, I keep thinking, “Please, don’t let me be the next one called!” And, of course, I am the next one called. The clerk then reads the charge.)

Judge: “How do you plead?”

Me: “Technically guilty, I guess, Your Honor.”

Judge: “Hmm, how long have you been driving?”

Me: “About eight years.”

Judge: “Have you had any other tickets?”

Me: “No, Your Honor.”

Judge: “Well, that’s a very fine record, young man. Dismissed!”

Get Out Or They Will Be An In-Jury

, , , , | Legal | December 24, 2018

(My mom gets called for jury duty every year. One year she is placed in a sexual harassment/title-nine trial. The woman in this case just so happens to be a patient of the doctor my mom works for. The judge in this trial is peeved from the start and warns that he will accept very few excuses for not serving. He declines to accept the excuse that someone is a small business owner and it’s nearing a shopping season, or that someone is a driver and doesn’t get reimbursed by his employer — basically, if he doesn’t drive he doesn’t make any money, and jury service payments are a joke. The judge gets to my mom, who states she has a reason for being unfit for this trial, but due to legal reasons cannot say in a crowded courtroom. The judge keeps pressing and my mom insists that due to HIPPA she can’t say anything more. The judge clears the court of everyone but the opposing parties and their attorneys.)

Judge: *as snide and sarcastic as all get out* “Well, now, [Mom], the court has been cleared. What is your excuse?”

Mom: “I work for [Doctor], and she is a patient.”

(The woman in question goes wide-eyed and whispers to her attorney. Both sides agree to dismiss my mom.)

Judge: *clearly pissed that he has to do this* “[Mom], you’re excused. But you have to return to the jury room to see if your service can be used elsewhere.”

(Fine. My mom went to the jury room, where the clerks were confused. It was already past lunch; most people were completely excused if they’d made it this far. They formally excused her from service for the year. My mom had a good laugh, not only because the judge was so rude, but because the woman was known for being a pain in the a** at my mom’s office.)

No Judgments, But You Were Speeding

, , , , , | Legal | December 18, 2018

(I’m dating a girl who works at a law office in a small suburb town. The attorney who owns the firm is also the head judge in the suburb. My girlfriend gets stopped for speeding on the main road through the town.)

Officer: *writing ticket* “Where do you work, ma’am?”

Girlfriend: “The law office of Jim [Judge].”

Officer: *stops writing, looks up* “You mean Judge James [Judge]?”

Girlfriend: “Yeah, but I just call him Jim.”

Officer: *crumples up ticket* “I’m not even going to bother.”

Repossession Is Ten Tenths Of The Law

, , , , , | Hopeless | December 2, 2018

(I am unemployed for an extended period of time. I end up getting a ticket for lapsed car inspection. The police officer tells me to get the car inspected and the ticket will be reduced to a parking fine. Two hours after this, my car gets repossessed by my car finance company. This is three days before I start my new job. I am not able to get the car inspected, so I go to court to pay the ticket.)

Judge: “So, we can reduce this to a parking fine if you plead guilty. Did you get the car inspected?”

Me: “Unfortunately, the car got repossessed several hours after I got the ticket.”

Judge: “Oh, no! That’s terrible!”

Me: “Well, I have a job now and I’m doing well, so it could be worse. I’m hoping to get the car back on Friday, and then I’ll have it inspected.”

Judge: “I’m so glad to hear you’re doing better. You have enough on your plate, so I’m dismissing this. You have a good day!”

Me: “Thank you so much!”

(I got the car back and it is now inspected. I’m super grateful to the judge, because if I’d had to pay a fine, I wouldn’t have had enough money to recover my car.)

A One-Way Ticket To Stupidity

, , , , | Legal | November 13, 2018

(I am waiting for a friend to fight his parking ticket. I am sitting in the back of a very busy traffic courtroom.)

Bailiff: “NEXT!”

(A guy goes up and hands a ticket over to the bailiff, who announces his name and citation number to the court reporter.)

Judge: “Well, Mr. [Guy], what’s the story here?”

Guy: “I was parking on the South Side in a municipal lot. It was really busy and I was in line for the meter.”

(In this city, there is one “meter” per lot. You enter your plate number and a receipt prints out.)

Guy: “While I was in line, the meter maid gave me a ticket.”

Judge: “This ticket says it was on [date], is that correct?”

Guy: “Yes.”

Judge: *sighs LOUDLY, places his head in his hands, and makes an announcement* “If there is anyone in this courtroom with a ticket from the South Side on [date], please stand up.”

(About fifteen people stand up.)

Judge: “How many of you were in line to pay when you got the ticket?”

(Everyone raises their hands.)

Judge: “Son of a— Bailiff, can you collect up all those tickets, please?”

(There’s a bit of a wait while everyone pulls out their tickets. The bailiff hands them to the traffic court judge and he reads each one. Finally he announces that he doesn’t have time to hear each case. He’s dismissing every ticket; they can all leave. Finally, my friend gets called.)

Judge: “What’s your story?”

Friend: “Well, I was on the North Side on [date two weeks after the last group]. I parked, walked across the lot towards the meter and the meter maid pulled in. She immediately ticketed me. If you look at the time on the ticket and the time on the receipt, she wrote the ticket at exactly the same time as the receipt printed. I was the only one in the lot. She had to know the car in the lot belonged to the guy currently at the meter.”

Judge: *looks at ticket* “This ticket was written by [Meter Maid].”

Friend: “Yes, sir.”

Judge: “Well, today is your lucky day. That story sounds so stupid I wouldn’t normally believe it. But, given what I just witnessed, I’m dismissing yours, as well.”

Friend: “I don’t suppose there’s a way to prevent this from happening again?”

Judge: “I’m going to suggest she get retrained or replaced. I can’t make any promises.”

(Based on a story in the local paper a month later, she was still doing it.)

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