The Traffic Stop Stickler and Three Stupid Things They Say

You know what never ceases to amaze me?  No, it wasn’t the traffic stop with the 18-year-old hooker with the love child…although that’s an amusing tale.

No, what never ceases to amaze me is when I’m trying to conduct a traffic stop and suddenly the driver of the vehicle I’m attempting to stop becomes a complete stickler for the rules of the road.

Case in point:

I recently stopped someone for speeding.  I pulled out and hit the emergency lights. The vehicle just kept on a-goin’.

What the hell?!?

Upon the eventual contact, I asked the driver why they didn’t stop when they saw the pretty lights and heard the loud ass siren.

Here are three of the dumbest things I’ve heard on a traffic stop as excuses for not stopping:

  1. The curb was red.  Really?!?  The noise and strobes behind you don’t trump the red curb?  God forbid you use some common sense and think that perhaps I have rear lights to indicate to approaching traffic to take car whilst I crush your soul.
  2. I didn’t think it was safe. I don’t care what you think is safe.  And by the way, I typically don’t turn on my lights until I want you to stop…which is usually right where you are!  Also, when you don’t stop, it makes it less and less safe as time goes on.  Because I assume you are hiding your kilo of coke and your sawed-off shotgun.
  3. I was in the left lane, so I thought I’d continue my left turn and pull off the main road.  Well, far be it from me to dissuade you from your current course and/or destination…oh, no.  Wait.  That’s exactly what I’m trying to do!

Good Lord, people.

The vehicle code (at least in the great state of CA…but I imagine other 49 have a similar statute) requires you to “immediately drive to the right-hand edge or curb of the highway, clear of any intersection, and therupon shall stop and remain stopped…” (CVC 21806(a)(1)) when a traffic stop finds you.

Remember that place on your license with your signature?  Yeah, that is more or less your acknowledgement that you are aware of and understand the rules of the freaking road.

So, do me a favor Mr/Ms Sudden Stickler of the Law, when you see the flashy-flashies come on behind you, it would behoove you to pull to the right and wait nice and patient-like for me to make contact.

If you just keep on cruising along on your whim, you may just see an extra violation on your inevitable citation.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic. Snark is encouraged. Being a prat is not.

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12 thoughts on “The Traffic Stop Stickler and Three Stupid Things They Say

  1. The only thing i can see that might be a legit reason is the lefthand lane thing if it is not SAFE to get over into the righthand lane. That being said, i’ve only been stopped a handful of times and each time i saw the lights and heard the bwip of the siren, i immediately pulled over and stopped. Two of the times, the cop was facing the opposite direction of which i was travelling and had to pull a u turn to get behind me. in both instances, i stopped and waited for the officer to pull up behind me. In all instances because i never contest that i was speeding or had committed a traffic offense, plus i am polite and apologetic to the officer, i usually am lucky and get off with a warning.

  2. About someone not feeling it’s safe to stop: I’ve been taught and read several places that if you feel it isn’t safe to stop where you are you should pull to the farthest right lane and put on your hazards, slow down, and then stop as soon as it’s safe. What do you think about someone doing that?

  3. I care about safety. If, in my best judgement, I do not believe it’s safe for me to stop right now, I won’t. Given that you’re still wet behind the ears compared to me, I take priority. That’s me taking priority away from you in spite of your absolute authority over all you survey.

  4. Suddenly these people become authorities on what is safe and yet now they are getting pulled over. It’s a shame they weren’t authorities on doing what is safe five minutes earlier because then there would not have been any need for someone to turn on the pretty lights. When considering that the person most at risk is the Officer who pulled you over then I think his or her judgment can be relied upon and keep in mind the officer is at risk because of your actions. So much for your safety concerns however new to you those concepts may be.

  5. The best thing I ever did was attend a Citizens Police Academy, where I developed even more empathy for what Officers go through every day. I haven’t been stopped in more than 30 plus years (no math allowed!) but if I WERE, I know to roll my windows down, turn on interior lights, and keep my hands on the steering wheel, until instructed to do otherwise! And I would never (again) use a lame excuse (like having to pee…) 🙂

  6. Well, I can tell you in several self defense classes for women, they say it’s perfectly fine to continue to a well lit area that feels “safe”…don’t take it personal,,sometimes people just freak out when they see the sirens and lights…have a tiny bit of patience…

    • 1). Stopped by a motorcop = daytime (usually)…meaning most places are generally a “well lit area”. 2) As far as the “feels safe” thingy, your police impersonators aren’t going to be on marked police motorcycles ($ $$,$$$) wearing motorcop gear ($ $,$$$). They’re usually creepy freaks or wanna be cops who couldn’t pass the psych eval; and usually are not rolling in the dough. They mostly scrounge together a couple of small led lights or maybe a cigarette plug ‘Cojak’ light or two from an auction or scratch and dent online police supply sale while wearing a patchwork ‘uniform’ that screams WTF. 3) A motorcop is almost always very selective about when and where he/she turns on the flashy and yelpy thingys to pull you over; and that selection usually has as much to do with your safety as ours. So, yeah you go ahead and pick that ‘safer’ spot because you know better. Just know that if you put the motorcop’s safety at risk, you’ll probably be cited for that too. Sheesh…”have a tiny bit of” common sense…