I have never had any speeding tickets and have never gotten into any accidents and was completely shocked when I was pulled over. I constantly monitor my speedometer and GPS, and I was travelling 80-85 MPH the whole time down the highway. The radar used was a Stalker Radar. The weather was cloudy with slight drizzle and 5-10 MPH winds.
I am going to contact a local attorney, but I am looking for advice on what to do. This completely destroys my plans and is going to cause major setbacks and inconviences, including financially. I was advised to file a complaint against the officer - should I do this before or after the court appearance?
I am completely shocked and don't know how such a gross misreading of the radar could happen.
If you hire an attorney, the attorney could speak with the prosecutor, explain the situation, and ask the prosecutor to amend the ticket to the speed you said you were going (83 mph). You're still speeding but at least it's not as bad as 107 mph in 70 mph zone. In Illinois, it's a Class A misdemeanor to speed 40 mph or more over the limit. Assuming prosecutors in Florida can amend the speeds on the face of the ticket, it would likely benefit you. You should retain an attorney and ask them: 1) Are there dispositions you can negotiate that will keep this ticket from going on my driving record as a conviction or counting as points on my license? 2) How likely is it that you can convince the prosecutor to amend the speed to the actual speed I was going? 3) How much more will this cost in fines if the prosecutor agrees to amend the speed down? (Sometimes, prosecutors would add more fines on but amend the speed down so it would cost you more to get what you wanted).
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You already know what to do as stated in your question: contact a local attorney.
You may choose to fight this on technical grounds and need someone experienced.
DO NOT file a complaint against the officer. If you do that it will only motivate him that much more to appear in court on your trial date. You are charged with doing 107 - 107 MPH! I don't care how fast you were really going the problems this is causing in your life is predicated on the allegation of 107 and not the truth. Just do yourself a favor and retain counsel ASAP. A lawyer that works the local court will know exactly how to handle this ticket.
If you must file a complaint against the officer, it is best that you wait until after the court date to do this (for many reasons). While it is very possible that the officer made a mistake when obtaining your speed, Florida law makes it very difficult to disprove the officer's allegation. However, a local traffic ticket attorney, who is familiar with local court practices and the temperament of the issuing officer, will defend you in court in an effort to obtain the best possible outcome. Also, if you hire a traffic attorney to represent you in court, you may not be required to attend the hearing.
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