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Two Words Too Many

One West Coast attorney was recently able to get a speeding ticket dismissed, because the sign was too verbose.

There is a city ordinance in Seattle that a traffic control sign can have no more than 70 words. Such a rule is clearly not an issue for most signs (stop, yield, no left turn, no U-turn and so on). But, consider construction zone signs and school zone signs, which contained detailed instructions about what is and is not legal. Attorney Joe Hunt counted the words on the school zone sign. Because the warning said "when lights are flashing" instead of "when flashing," the sign was two words over the limit.

The city is currently in the process of taking down and rewording the signs.

We just posted on this matter last month, but the issue keeps coming up in Mojave. This specific issue is not quite the same: here, the question is the government's ability to prove that the defendant broke the law. Some laws are very specific; for example, you must have your headlights on from 30 minutes after sunset to thirty minutes before sunrise. If sunrise is at 7:00 and you received a ticket for no headlights at 6:31, the ticket should be thrown out. A layperson cannot possibly know all the details of the law. That's why you need an attorney practicing in Kern County on your side.

We have laws for a reason. But for every law created, there is an attorney looking to make sure that the state actually follows every little law before they can convict you of a traffic offense.