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need advice re: summons

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14 replies [Last post]
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous

Hi All,
Last night, around 7:30pm, my wife and I were stopped by the police and given summonses for 'riding bikes on the sidewalk'. We had been walking our bikes on the sidewalk, towards the corner and stopped about 30'from the corner to put on our helmets. Then, due to the very busy traffic on the street(and because we were to turn left at the corner), we mounted our bikes and rolled at no more than walking speed (no peds at all on the sidewalk) to the corner, stopped, waited for the light and then proceeded on the street. 2 blocks later the cops pull us over.
My question is, how should we handle this in court? (we got a summons, not a ticket). I know, technically we broke the law, but this is ridiculous! How about some sense of reason/judgement and on the part of the cops? Also, when we got home, we noticed that on the 'place of occurence' line not only do the two summonses not match, they are incorrect: they list the street where they stopped us, but not the street where it occurred. Do we have any recourse here, grounds for dismissal? I'm not looking for sympathy here (been discussed ad-nauseum on this board already), simply what to do.
Thank you, and sorry about the long-winded post.

Anonymous's picture
Colleen (not verified)
stay tuned

My friend had something very similar happen to her and my recollection was that when she went to court the ticket was dismissed. But, I don't recall the details and have asked her to post them.

Anonymous's picture
Lenna (not verified)
sidwalk riding ticket

"Hi,

Yes, this happened to me last year. I pleaded not guilty by sending in the summons with a not guilty plea. Then I got something in the mail and it was dismissed. Just like that. Two weeks after the first ticket, got a ticket for running a red light. Sent in a not guilty plea, got a court date, went, and they dropped it. You have nothing to lose, except time, if you plead not guilty. The jugdes really have better things to do. Obviously, not all tickets will end up dismissed, but it seems that well over 50% do (anectodal evidence). If you do end up going to court, keep insisting that you were walking your bikes and only got on them at the very end of the sidewalk, right before the road. Just keep saying, ""we were not riding on the sidewalk."" good luck."

Anonymous's picture
Rick Braun (not verified)

nm

Anonymous's picture
Rick Braun (not verified)
perjury is a crime

"Do you think that any reasonable person would interpret 'about 30' from the corner"" (if that's where you mounted your bikes while on the sidewalk) as the ""very end of the sidewalk""?"

Anonymous's picture
Morene (not verified)
DO NOT SAY ANYTHING

"I have my SECOND court date because I opened my BIG mouth and used the word ""entrapment"" loud enough for the judge to hear. Everyone else was taking the $20 fine and pleading guilty...kinda goes against the grain if you're not, but you won't have to waste another day in the rectum of NYC with true slime surrounding you (people who are caught for things such as public urination, etc.). So, my advice...get there earlier than the summons says (summons says 9:30, be there by 9) and you should be out in an hour, 20 bucks poorer and feeling abused, but you'll be done. It doesn't ""go on any record.""
Good luck!"

Anonymous's picture
kley (not verified)
personally, i feel public urination less a crime! slime? wow.
Anonymous's picture
Bill Vojtech (not verified)

"Wait a minute.... We're a bike club. We urinate in public all the time. Every roadside bush ""watering"" is PUBLIC URINATION.

So because somebody gets the same urge in the confines of the city at 3 a.m. after the bars close they're slime?"

Anonymous's picture
Claudette (not verified)
Good point (nm)
Anonymous's picture
Rick Sanchez, (not verified)
Rider Habits and low life slime

Glad you mentioned it as that was the first thing I thought----then I wondered how you guys in the city ride long distances and manage not to have to take care of business like the rest of us!!!

Anonymous's picture
hal eskenazi (not verified)
sidewalk summons

"i hate telling you this because you really shouldn't be riding on the sidewalk for any reason.
but i will. if it's a traffic ticket you are sometimes permitted to by mail. if so, plead not guilty by ""defective summons"". and then make a substantial contribution to recycle a bike for your sins.
"

Anonymous's picture
hal eskenazi (not verified)
sidewalk summons

"i hate telling you this because you really shouldn't be riding on the sidewalk for any reason.
but i will. if it's a traffic ticket you are sometimes permitted to by mail. if so, plead not guilty by ""defective summons"". and then make a substantial contribution to recycle a bike for your sins.
"

Anonymous's picture
mike (not verified)
i was censored the first time

don't know why my comment was deleted by the mods/lord of the board?
i said that the police were looking to make their quota.
they have a quota of summonses to write. two sidewalk summons is two down the hatch

Anonymous's picture
Tony Mantione (not verified)
sidewalk bike

"Plead ""NOT GUILTY . It happend to me in Jan. rode my bike fron the street over the curb cut onto the sidewalk and immediately dismounted and began walking. the officer gave me a ticket . I mailed in a not guilty plea. a few weeks later a letter arrived saying my case was dismissed , ""insufficient evidence "" or something along those lines ....send in the ticket w/ a NOT GUILTY plea ....it may just work in your favor ....Ciao , Tony"

Anonymous's picture
RBJ (not verified)
thank you

"thank you all for your responses. we decided to plead ""not guilty"" by mail. also, here is an interesting tidbit for those in similar situations:

""3. Tickets for riding on the sidewalk: .... these tickets fall under the jurisdiction of the Environmental Control Board (ECB). If you are given a ticket or summons that requires you to appear in criminal court instead, you should be able to get the ticket thrown out for lack of jurisdiction.""
- taken from: (helpful"" target=""_new"">http://www.bicycledefensefund.org/summons.html
(helpful
website)

this was our case - not only is the summons inaccurate, it is a criminal court summons.

"

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