Friday, October 9, 2009

I fought the law

I found myself in a courtroom again for the second time in 2 weeks. This time, however, it was City of Tucson vs. Myself--not as ideal a circumstance as jury duty.

On August 13th, I received a $175 ticket for parking in a totally legal and legitimate spot--or so I thought. Apparently it is not okay to park within 5 feet of a driveway. Who knew? There was no way I could combat the actual validity of the ticket--because honestly I was parked within 5 inches of that driveway--and they say ignorance is no excuse from justice. So my best bet was to attempt to get the fine reduced or suggest an "alternative method" of payment... Fresh baked cookies, your honor?

I got there early so I listened to a few cases before mine came up. I was relieved to see that the judge had a good sense of humor and was joking around with most of the defendants: good sign. But then I realized that he wasn't reducing or dismissing anyone's charges: bad sign.

Finally he called my name. The result of a thousand prayers to help me not cry: I smiled and I admitted responsibility and calmly asked if I could have an alternative payment method.

To my delight he said that would work just fine, "How much a month would you like to pay?"

Pay?? By "alternative" I meant different means not in a different way! So I swallowed hard and I asked if I could do community service instead. He began to assess my finances: Oh you're a student? How do you pay for school? And rent? Which dorm do you work in? How many hours a week do you work? etc. etc.

After thinking for what seemed like forever...

Verdict: 18 hours of community service with a church or nonprofit organization, to be completed by the end of the year.

It'll probably take me 18 hours alone to organize that dusty old Relief Society closet in the institute. Awesome :)

9 comments:

Aubrey said...

Ha,ha. How do you prove it? Does someone have to sign to verify your hours? I know a sister who knows a bishop Ü

Now about this ticket...did someone call to complain or something? Because I really don't see an officer driving around and randomly ticketing anyone near a driveway.

Paige said...

Yeah I have to get someone to write a letter from a nonprofit organization/church to verify my hours.

And yes that's exactly what they do... they have people designated to write parking tickets for different violations.

Katie and Ferenc said...

anjuli got this same ticket last semester! and she got community service for it too... they must be really anal about it here, because I'd never even heard of that before!

Colton said...

I got a HUGE parking ticket in Tucson once. I didn't even think about asking for community service. You're a genius. I just forked it over, and it was terrible.

Anjuli said...

oooo my gosh! katie already said it but this EXACT same thing happened to me! i just cried and told them I had no money and no job and the guy just gave me 18 hours of community service! haha i hate that stupid driveway law! who knew?

Joe said...

18 hours of community service for a $175 ticket...that's almost 10 bucks an hour! Lucky.

Joe said...

And I love the new quote :)

TexasTwinsTwice said...

Oh that is soooooooo smart!!!!!


If I had a dollar for every parking ticket I got in college...then I'd have about 1/50th of the amount I had to pay out in parking tickets!!! =)

Phoenix, AZ said...

THAT IS AWESOME! YOU ARE READY TO GRADUATE!