Stop (pun intended) me if you’ve heard this one…
A police officer pulls over a driver. He walks up to the driver and says, “Sir, do you know why I pulled you over?” The driver says, “No, I don’t.” The officer says, “You didn’t stop at that stop sign.” The driver said, “Well, maybe not all the way, but I slowed down! What’s the big deal?” The officer says, “Sir, why don’t you step out of your car and let me demonstrate the difference.” The driver complied at which time the officer began repeatedly hitting the driver with his nightstick. The officer asked the driver, “Do you want me to slow down or stop?”
And now for the boring shit….
CVC 22450. (a) The driver of any vehicle approaching a stop sign at the entrance to, or within, an intersection shall stop at a limit line, if marked, otherwise before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection.
If there is no limit line or crosswalk, the driver shall stop at the entrance to the intersecting roadway. (emphasis added)
Not really hard to figure out, is it? Here are some things that don’t count as a stop…
1. Resting your foot on the brake as you approach the stop sign and/or limit line.
2. Quickly tapping the brake so there is a brief weight transfer from back to front making it kind of appear like you stopped…even though it’s fucking obvious you didn’t.
3. Slowing down because “there weren’t any other cars coming.”
4. Slowing down, looking to your left, seeing me, mouthing “Oh, shit!”, and subsequently stopping 20′ into the intersection.
5. Waving at me as you realize what a dipshit you are for either a) doing #4 or b) creeping through without stopping at any point.
I’ve thought about taking a video camera out to one of my favorite spots and letting it run for five minutes or so and letting non-LEO’s tell me which cars stopped and which ones didn’t. I’ve had a few ride-a-longs in my day and I find it interesting that of the stop sign violations I’ve let slide (3-5 MPH w/o stopping), I am frequently asked, “Why didn’t you stop that guy? He just ran the stop sign!”
I find it amusing that a lot of drivers think stop sign tickets are bullshit….yet, these tend to be the same folks that bitch about speeders and stop sign runners in their neighborhoods. And, by the way, it always seems to be “those damn teenagers.” Hilarious.