What started as a rather low-intensity stop for a mechanical violation
turned into something much bigger (no pun intended).
CHP officers initially pulled over a vehicle in Salinas pursuant to VC
24400: a broken headlight. During the course of the stop, officers suspected
that the driver, who used the name Agustin Alejo, was also under the influence
of drugs. When “Mr. Alejo” was booked and fingerprinted, officials
discovered that his real name was Byron Contreras, and he was wanted for the
1989 gang-related murder of a Los Angeles man. Mr. Contreras was 16 at the time of the shooting;
his four accomplices were all caught and prosecuted, but he successfully
evaded capture for 25 years using a string of false names and false identification
documents. There is a good chance that he may have lived in a small town
to avoid detection, like Delano or Ridgecrest.
When officers pulled over Mr. Contreras that night in Salinas, he was one
of Los Angeles’ most wanted fugitives.
Hazards of Law Enforcement
This topic has been heatedly discussed in the last several months, in the
wake of several high-profile incidents. Critics of police behavior liked
to point out that police work is
15th on the list of deadliest jobs, trailing occupations like garbage collecting
and groundskeeping. But this statistic considers all law enforcement officers,
including those who work behind desks. If only patrol officers are considered,
the ranking is much higher.
Police officers are also criticized on websites like this one, for enforcing
ticky-tack laws like the aforementioned
VC 42200 in a never-ending quest for revenue. But these officers are often just
following instructions from higher up.
It is indisputable that officers never know who is behind the wheel. It
could be someone like your grandmother, a dangerous fugitive like Mr.
Contreras, or someone in between. The best rule is always to comply with
minimal requests like “license and insurance please,” say
as little as possible, and let a lawyer handle the ticket in court.
Getting Legal Help
The aggressive lawyers at Bigger & Harman, APC, are committed to giving
individuals a voice when dealing with speeding and traffic tickets. Call
today at 661-859-1177 or email
firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español,
llame al 661-376-0214.