fight illegal left turn ticket or not?

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fight illegal left turn ticket or not?

i am from Pennsylvania and i am currently a driver for a google maps
project. i have been asked to map new jersey area where i am not
from nor do i know all their specific traffic laws. i have a
computer monitor in the car that shows me a GPS map and also areas
to go to, while looking at the monitor and being stuck in traffic i
noticed a secondary street i could turn left onto and make it to the
street i needed to and avoid the traffic i was stuck in. i turned
left and apparently missed signs saying no left turn down that
specific street during a few hour window. in PA we have no such
signs so i was not even aware to be looking for them. the officer
stopped me, and others apparently before me which i though where
parked cars lined up actually were others that had done what i did.

now i see that the fine may require a court appearance and 3 points
on my DL. please advise.

Asked on October 29, 2016 under General Practice, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You don't "fight"--you negotiate. You can almost never beat a traffic ticket outright: not seeing a sign is not defense, and the court will believe the police officer, not you. But in my experience, if you have a clean or good driving record otherwise and a reasonable explanation, and approach the matter humbly,  the prosecutor will most likely offer you the chance to plea to a lesser offense, one with fewer points on your license. You do this the day/time of court: show up a little early and speak to the prosecutor first chance you get.


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