01 Jun Staten Island Traffic Judge Proving Extremely Unpopular
Fighting a traffic ticket often means the hassle of spending a day at traffic court not knowing whether you’ll be found guilty. Worse still is facing a judge who is openly hostile and disinterested in your defense.
This is allegedly the case with one Staten Island traffic court where an official is said to berate plaintiffs and ignore their story. The issue has affected people in the borough so much that a petition drawn up against the judge now has over 1,000 signatures. It asks Governor Andrew Cuomo that this judge be removed from the bench.
The petition drafter describes the vibe in the courtroom as “some totalitarian nation.” Descriptions of the man in the cited sources include the following phrases: “hostile,” “unprofessional,” “shows unjust, mechanical, harsh attitudes.” A New York Post article describes how an eighty-five-year-old man was harassed because he was talking too slowly, which made him more flustered and he ended up in tears.
A serious accusation is that even after the judge was told by the Staten Island DOT that a phony no-left-turn sign had been put up at a corner and to ignore any tickets that came in from that intersection, he didn’t. Even after the DOT Borough Commissioner drafted a letter for defendants to take to court asking the same, the judge ignored it.
Do Traffic Judges Speed?
On a more gossipy note, the New York Post article regarding this matter brought up an Inside Edition investigation that claimed this judge was once clocked going 70 mph in a 40 mph zone.
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Another major point raised by critics is that he doesn’t really listen to anyone who comes in and simply assumes that everyone is guilty, making it very difficult to have the ticket dismissed or reduced. Indeed, he was the top convicting traffic judge in the state twice. 2011 numbers show that on average New York judges find 63.1 percent of drivers are in the wrong, while this magistrate convicts 77.8 percent.
The Scales of Justice
Do extra guilty decisions mean he’s actually doing his job really well? The true purpose of a judge is not to make sure that the state wins and rakes in as much money as possible (although the state always needs money) but instead to serve justice. A fair judge will take the time to listen to the defendant—it is called a “hearing” after all—and will make a decision based on the law, not an assumption of guilt.
Facing tough judges is what lawyers do every day, and a skilled one knows the ins and outs of the system. The sad fact backed by statistics is that traffic judges, cranky or otherwise, almost always respond better to a legal professional than to an inexperienced, regular citizen.
Let a Professional Traffic Attorney Get You off the Hook
The Law Office of James Medows knows the NYC traffic judges very well and what they respond to. Attorney Medows knows the way tickets can be invalid, and he is adept at using the law to prove innocence. He appears in court for his clients so they don’t have to.
Don’t get points on or be at risk of losing your license due to traffic violations. Don’t pay fines and hidden fees when you don’t need to. Call our office for a free and confidential consultation and avoid paying a ticket that can affect you for years to come. Simply call 917-856-1247 or reach us online through the form below.