Written by Gregory Monte.
When you hear the term “jaywalking,” most likely you think of a pedestrian who is too lazy to walk to the corner in order to cross a street. For some reason, there is a certain negative connotation to that term. Its almost as if an individual’s unwillingness to make the effort to properly cross the street reveals some flaw in his character.
Didn’t his mother ever teach him right from wrong?
But guess what?
Pennsylvania has no state law which prohibits crossing other than at a corner. In fact, there is a statute which specifically allows it – 3543. Pedestrians crossing at other than crosswalks. All you have to make sure to do is yield to any vehicles that are on that street.
“(a) General rule.–Every pedestrian crossing a roadway at any point other than within a crosswalk at an intersection or any marked crosswalk shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway.”
It is important to keep in mind, however that this general rule does not necessarily apply in urban districts. According to Section (c) of that same statute:
“(c) Between controlled intersections in urban district.–Between adjacent intersections in urban districts at which traffic-control signals are in operation pedestrians shall not cross at any place except in a marked crosswalk.”
But a close reading of this subsection reveals that the prohibition only applies to streets which have pedestrian control signals (i.e. Walk/Do Not Walk flashing symbols) at both ends. While most business areas of cities do have this type of set up (because of the amount of traffic congestion), many residential sections do not.
Sometime in the next week or two I will discuss some other types of actions that technically fit under the general umbrella of “jaywalking.”
My Free Resources
Applying the Traffic Ticket Defense Method to Challenge a Citation.
This is a seven-page, detailed explanation of my three-step method for challenging any traffic ticket. I use the “Driving at a Safe Speed” statute from Pennsylvania to illustrate this method, but it can be applied to any other statute that you might be cited for in the vehicle code.
In addition, no matter what state you live in, the procedure is the same: you need to understand the statute you allegedly violated, look for technicalities in that statute and (most importantly) find case law to support/reveal those technicalities.
The Pennsylvania Stop Sign Defense Strategy in a Nutshell.
This is a one-page, eight-point summary of the strategy I discovered while researching ways of beating unfair stop sign tickets. It is specifically geared to Pennsylvania but can also be applied to most other states.
My Son’s Opening Trial Statement at the Court of Common Pleas.
This is an elegant, one-page, powerfully concise expression of my defense strategy.
The Brief – My Son’s Case Brief for the Court of Common Pleas
- An eighteen-page argument for why an illegal stop sign is not enforceable.
- Requested by the President Judge at Wayne County, PA, Court of Common Pleas.
- A highly distilled application of the Pennsylvania Stop Sign Ticket Defense.