Written by Gregory Monte.
Perhaps I went a bit “over the top” in that blog post title, but I want to hammer home an important point that too many defendants still don’t get:
If it is your word against that of the police officer, the judge will always believe the officer. Unless you can beat a ticket based on a technicality in the law, you are pretty much wasting your time in court.
But what if you have your own word plus the testimony of another witness? Will that give you a better shot in court?
Maybe, but in the case I discuss below, there actually were two witnesses for the defense and it still didn’t matter – the judge believed the officer.
“After hearing this evidence, ‘[t]he trial court found Officer Aloi’s testimony to be extremely credible’ and, thus, it convicted Appellant of the above-stated offenses.”
Surprise, surprise, surprise …
Commonwealth v. Jauregui, Pa: Superior Court 2017
On January 21, 2015, Tannia Aurora Jauregui was driving with her mother on Michigan Avenue in Swarthmore, PA when she was stopped by Borough Police Officer Aloi and charged with a speeding offense under Title 75, Section 3362(a)(3).
You can read all the details of the stop if you want to by following the case link, but for the purpose of this post, I only want to highlight how the defendant and her mother wasted time and money thinking they could convince a judge to rule in their favor based on what they said in court.
Highlights of Useless Testimony of Defendant’s Mother
- “Ms. Palma testified that they were going to the vet because the dog was bleeding.”
- “Ms. Palma further testified that she intermittently looked at the speedometer as [Appellant] drove on Michigan Avenue because she was in a catastrophic vehicle accident many years ago.”
- “Ms. Palma testified that while traveling on Michigan Avenue, the Vehicle was not going more than 25mph.
- “Ms. Palma testified that she saw the patrol vehicle crossing School Lane while traveling on Michigan Avenue.”
Highlights of Useless Testimony of Defendant
- “[Appellant also testified and] denied driving on Michigan Avenue in excess of 25mph on the date and time in question.”
- “[Appellant] testified that while traveling on Michigan Avenue, she looked at her speedometer.”
- “[Appellant] further testified that in the morning on the date in question, she was at the vet and had a receipt for the visit.”
- “[Appellant] introduced [into evidence] a photograph of the intersection of School Lane and Michigan Avenue and a photograph of Michigan Avenue, which were admitted.
- “[Appellant] testified that Officer Aloi’s patrol vehicle was not parked at the corner of School Lane and Michigan Avenue, but rather [it] was parked “all the way down School Lane.”
- “[Appellant] testified that there was a stop sign on Michigan Avenue where it intersects with a street two blocks before School Lane. [Appellant] could not recall the name of the street and testified that she would not have stopped at this stop sign and then accelerate[d] the Vehicle to 50 mph before arriving at the School Lane intersection.”
Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah: You vs. Cop – YOU LOSE
The Superior Court made mincemeat of defendant’s testimony:
“Essentially, Appellant is complaining that the trial court should have credited her and her mother’s testimony rather than that of the officer
But the court didn’t stop there. It went on to ridicule her defense as “self-serving:”
“Moreover, the trial court was free to believe the officer’s testimony and discount the self-serving claims of Appellant and her mother, Ms. Palma.”
I have said it before and I will continue to repeat it – the only real way to win in court is to find a technicality that the judge has no choice but to accept.
This is exactly how my son won his stop sign case. If you want to read about the technicality he used, check out my 23-page eBook: How My Son Beat an Unfair Stop Sign Ticket in Pennsylvania.
At my website you also find information my other resources:
The Pennsylvania Stop Sign Defense Strategy in a Nutshell.
- A one-page, eight-point summary of the strategy I discovered.
- Available for free.
My son’s opening trial statement at the Court of Common Pleas.
- An elegant, one-page, powerfully concise expression of my defense strategy.
- Available for free.
How My Son Beat an Unfair Stop Sign Ticket in Pennsylvania.
- A 23-page analysis of my initial stop sign strategy.
- Prepared for my son’s trial in Magisterial Court.
- Available for $2.48.
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