Saturday, January 17, 2009

hypothetically speaking, of course...

One of the not so fun aspects of being employed in law enforcement is that some people just really don't appreciate your pulling them over and giving them a ticket.

I know, right?

Some anger is to be expected. I mean, how dare you stop them and cite them for going 10 over on a slippery day with no seatbelt or brake lights when you should be out there catching Real Criminals. So you ignore the anger and the snide comments, do your job, and wish them a safe rest of the day.

However sometimes, people don't appreciate it SO much that they decide that they are going to get back at the officer. They'll call and complain. And if they don't think that "well, I think traffic laws are stupid and I resent being told what to do by authority figures" is going to get them anywhere, they just make stuff up. This is when it really starts to get fun. Fun...or impugning someone's character, take your pick.

Allow me this moment of frustration:

It's just a ticket, people. And most of the time, it's not even the ticket you actually earned. 9 times out of 10, they write you up for a lesser charge, which amounts to a smaller point violation and a less expensive fine. They do this because they know that it's a pain in the butt to get a ticket, because they know that if you went into court you could get it reduced anyway, and because nobody gives them lollipops at the end of day based on how much revenue they pulled in. They have no personal investment in "catching you". Yes, you'll find the occasional power drunk jerk, but by and large...they just want the roads--and you--to be safe.

So, calling and making up stories about how you were verbally abused, or were (my personal favorite) sexually harrassed? Just because you don't want to 1) deal with the fact that you violated a traffic law and someone saw you, 2) pay your fine, and 3) get on with your life?

Sorry to get all 92-year-old grandma about it, but...you should be ashamed of yourselves.

Even if it's easy to prove your claim is unfounded, it still can take up to a month for all the people to do all the right things and fill out all the right paperwork. And even unfounded and dismissed claims end up on file. And--even if the officer has recorded all contacts and can prove that nothing unprofessional happened, they are still brought in and "counseled". Great use of time and resources. Great little added stress to an already stressful (and might I add, underpaid) job.

All because you're mad about getting a ticket. Nice.


6 comments:

~pollyanna said...

Good grief... Prayers headed you way...

And BYE, thank trooper for us...

I thought of him when the officer investigating hubby accident spoke to us at the hospital by phone two months ago... His first question to me was about hubby's injuries... then he asked if hubby was up to talking about his recollection of the accident. As it turns out no one was sited, it was determined that this was just an unfortunate list of events, that ended in the accident... and the crowding traffic was a factor that was thought to be major... We are glad we didn't have one more bill to pay, in the form of a ticket... but I know will never forget that this officer was concern first about hubby... I was really grateful to him as well...

~pollyanna said...

That should be "BTW, thank trooper..." auto spell check at work... [wink]

Becky said...

AMEN!

Awesome Mom said...

People are just do dumb. I get annoyed when I get a ticket but then I also realize that for this one rare ticket I have sped a lot more times, so I am due to get busted. I must admit that since my last ticked, which was a whopper in $$ thanks to California being a super expensive state, I have been a whole lot more careful about speeding. I guess that highway patrol officer got what he wanted in making me more careful even though I still have no idea what made him pull me over when there was a ton of people going faster than me.

Life and Hope said...

It's always someone else's fault...people never know why THEY get stopped....but they dial 911 or have an accident and they want a trooper or cop there asap. I totally empathize with you. G got called out at 1:00 a.m. to cover an accident (he went to bed at 10:00) but no one thanks the guys for losing a night of sleep to cover their accidents. Someone called a few weeks ago to "compliment" G and oh, by the way, is he married? If he made a traffic stop and asked her if she was married, it would be sexual harassment. WHATEVER people. Hang in there...it'll go away and the truth will come out.

*sunchips* said...

Amen.
Bottom line, some people are just idiots. *Coming from my experience as a highway patrol wife* :)
Spend $80 on a digital recorder for him to wear, it will make these things a little easier to deal with. As if they don't have enough stuff to put on everyday.