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Do I have a right to counsel in a magistrates court for a traffic violation

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Rdstines

Junior Member
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Ohio

Do I have a right to counsel in a magistrates court for a traffic violation and if they say I waved my right to counsel in writing, do they have to prove that document exists?
Do I have a right to counsel in a magistrates court for a traffic violation and if they say I waved my right to counsel in writing, do they have to prove that document exists? I received a speeding ticket in the town of Higginsport Ohio that I now know is notorious for being a speed trap to tourists. Having kindly talk to the ticketing officer in hopes that I could get the ticket dismissed or greatly reduced he advised me to ask magistrate to go last so it would just be us into plead guilty and he would help me out. I followed the ticketing officers advice and to no avail I got a 285 ticket. After leaving the court garage I noticed on a piece of paper that the magistrate to me that said and stated,With a checked box next to it, this exact sentence, without counsel, having Dooley waved his/her right to counsel in writing pursuant to C. R. 44 and entered a plea of 2 unchecked boxes Guilty/no contest or have a trial and was found guilty of the events of speeding in violation of section 7310 of the ordinance code a Misdemenor of the minor. I actually was never given any right to any counsel nor did I ever signed any paperwork stating that ice that I waive my right to counsel. The magistrate states he does not have to show me that signed piece of paper nor does the guilty or no contest box need to be checked. This is a non- recorded quart room/garage and my court date is tomorrow. I am a recent single father who is struggling financially and have had many health complications due to a nervous condition. Please please please help me in understanding my rights and anything you can do to show me that I can stand up for myself rightfully, and fight this. This court is doing nothing more then legal extortion from tourists who passed in the area. If this is the case could or should this be dismissed? Please please please if you can help any anyway I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you very much for your time
 


quincy

Senior Member
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Ohio

Do I have a right to counsel in a magistrates court for a traffic violation and if they say I waved my right to counsel in writing, do they have to prove that document exists?
Do I have a right to counsel in a magistrates court for a traffic violation and if they say I waved my right to counsel in writing, do they have to prove that document exists? I received a speeding ticket in the town of Higginsport Ohio that I now know is notorious for being a speed trap to tourists. Having kindly talk to the ticketing officer in hopes that I could get the ticket dismissed or greatly reduced he advised me to ask magistrate to go last so it would just be us into plead guilty and he would help me out. I followed the ticketing officers advice and to no avail I got a 285 ticket. After leaving the court garage I noticed on a piece of paper that the magistrate to me that said and stated,With a checked box next to it, this exact sentence, without counsel, having Dooley waved his/her right to counsel in writing pursuant to C. R. 44 and entered a plea of 2 unchecked boxes Guilty/no contest or have a trial and was found guilty of the events of speeding in violation of section 7310 of the ordinance code a Misdemenor of the minor. I actually was never given any right to any counsel nor did I ever signed any paperwork stating that ice that I waive my right to counsel. The magistrate states he does not have to show me that signed piece of paper nor does the guilty or no contest box need to be checked. This is a non- recorded quart room/garage and my court date is tomorrow. I am a recent single father who is struggling financially and have had many health complications due to a nervous condition. Please please please help me in understanding my rights and anything you can do to show me that I can stand up for myself rightfully, and fight this. This court is doing nothing more then legal extortion from tourists who passed in the area. If this is the case could or should this be dismissed? Please please please if you can help any anyway I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you very much for your time
Did you deserve the ticket (i.e., do you have a defense)?

If jail is not a possibility, there is no right to a court-appointed attorney. You can hire your own traffic attorney.

If you cannot afford to pay a fine, the court can work out a payment plan for you that fits your budget.
 
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Rdstines

Junior Member
My defense being the speed goes from 55 to 35 with no notation that he reduce speed limit ahead is coming. I had never driven through this one mile stretch of town and did not know the speed was going to decrease rapidly without warning. I did mention this to the ticketing officer and he said as long as they post the 35 mile an hour speed limit sign that’s what I have to obide by and I got that but when going such a speed it’s hard to decrease 20 mph that fast and try not to pass the first 35 mile an hour speed sign. I apologize if this sounds jumbled or confusing
 

Rdstines

Junior Member
On a document that the magistrate handed to me It clearly states in a checkbox that I signed a waiver to my counsel or my right to counsel which I never did, I was actually never asked if I wanted to obtain counsel.
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
My defense being the speed goes from 55 to 35 with no notation that he reduce speed limit ahead is coming. I had never driven through this one mile stretch of town and did not know the speed was going to decrease rapidly without warning. I did mention this to the ticketing officer and he said as long as they post the 35 mile an hour speed limit sign that’s what I have to obide by and I got that but when going such a speed it’s hard to decrease 20 mph that fast and try not to pass the first 35 mile an hour speed sign. I apologize if this sounds jumbled or confusing
Were you not wearing corrective lenses that you're required to wear? Speed limit signs are, generally, visible for quite some time. Definitely enough time to slow from 55 to 35.
 

Rdstines

Junior Member
I do not wear glasses or corrective lenses. The road is State Route 52 it was my understanding that when a decrease in speed like that is to take place there should be signs noting that he reduce speed limit is ahead. To simply go from 55 to 35 with a warning that there is a decrease happening I would assume that is not fair enough Warning. In regards to the document with the check the box that states I did sign a waiver to counsel that totally missed lead me to think that I couldn’t obtain a lawyer at all is there any way of handling that?
 

quincy

Senior Member
My defense being the speed goes from 55 to 35 with no notation that he reduce speed limit ahead is coming. I had never driven through this one mile stretch of town and did not know the speed was going to decrease rapidly without warning. I did mention this to the ticketing officer and he said as long as they post the 35 mile an hour speed limit sign that’s what I have to obide by and I got that but when going such a speed it’s hard to decrease 20 mph that fast and try not to pass the first 35 mile an hour speed sign. I apologize if this sounds jumbled or confusing
"Speed traps" generally withstand legal challenges. If signs are posted, the driver is expected to drive the posted speeds.

You can ask to take a traffic course.

How fast were you going (what does the ticket say)?
 

Rdstines

Junior Member
The ticket says 54 in a 35. The ticket also has three other areas that were marked to be tickets and I had to argue with the ticketing officer in regards to them because he tried to tell me that I did not have my seatbelt on when I clearly took it off in front of him to get my glove box, the second was I did not have a front license plate but on my Lexus SUV there is no place for a front license plate in third The officer was going to cite me for having expired insurance only because I handed him the wrong card. I explained to him that I just got my new renewal cards as I have for the last 20 years and just accidentally left that one in my wallet when I change the cards out. He tried to tell me that once I hand him a card that is what he has to put on the ticket when I clearly pulled out the right one and showed him I have insurance he said he didn’t care and that was when I turn my camera on and his whole attitude changed and he started scratching off the seatbelt The front license plate as well as improper insurance or discontinued Insurance. The officer was evidently dealing with a power control issue of his own. During magistrates court the ticketing officer while sitting at the folding table with us would continually hit his handcuffs against the table if he did not like the way I asked a question to the magistrate. At one point I had to politely look at him and ask him to please stop doing that. Again thank you so much for your help sorry for the rambling on
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
The ticket says 54 in a 35. The ticket also has three other areas that were marked to be tickets and I had to argue with the ticketing officer in regards to them because he tried to tell me that I did not have my seatbelt on when I clearly took it off in front of him to get my glove box, the second was I did not have a front license plate but on my Lexus SUV there is no place for a front license plate in third The officer was going to cite me for having expired insurance only because I handed him the wrong card. I explained to him that I just got my new renewal cards as I have for the last 20 years and just accidentally left that one in my wallet when I change the cards out. He tried to tell me that once I hand him a card that is what he has to put on the ticket when I clearly pulled out the right one and showed him I have insurance he said he didn’t care and that was when I turn my camera on and his whole attitude changed and he started scratching off the seatbelt The front license plate as well as improper insurance or discontinued Insurance. The officer was evidently dealing with a power control issue of his own. During magistrates court the ticketing officer while sitting at the folding table with us would continually hit his handcuffs against the table if he did not like the way I asked a question to the magistrate. At one point I had to politely look at him and ask him to please stop doing that. Again thank you so much for your help sorry for the rambling on
Just for the record...you got lucky on the no front plate ticket. Ohio law requires it: http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/4503.21. There IS a bracket available for your vehicle...I would suggest you buy it and install your plate as the law requires. You might not be so lucky next time.
 

PayrollHRGuy

Senior Member
Seatbelt no biggy.

Licence Plate: You should have been ticket.

4503.21 Display of license plates and validation stickers or temporary license placard or windshield sticker.
(A)

(1) No person who is the owner or operator of a motor vehicle shall fail to display in plain view on the front and rear of the motor vehicle a license plate that bears the distinctive number and registration mark assigned to the motor vehicle by the director of public safety, including any county identification sticker and any validation sticker issued under sections 4503.19 and 4503.191 of the Revised Code, except as follows:

(a) A manufacturer of motor vehicles or dealer therein, the holder of an in transit permit, and the owner or operator of a motorcycle, motorized bicycle or moped, motor-driven cycle or motor scooter, autocycle, cab-enclosed motorcycle, manufactured home, mobile home, trailer, or semitrailer shall display a license plate on the rear only.

(b) A motor vehicle that is issued two license plates shall display the validation sticker only on the rear license plate, except that a commercial tractor that does not receive an apportioned license plate under the international registration plan shall display the validation sticker on the front of the commercial tractor.

(c) An apportioned vehicle receiving an apportioned license plate under the international registration plan shall display the license plate only on the front of a commercial tractor and on the rear of all other vehicles.
Insurance Card: You should have been ticketed and notified how you could prove that you had insurance.
 
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Rdstines

Junior Member
n regards to the document with the check box that states I waved my right to counsel by signing the document. I never signed any documents stating that I would ever deny counsel. This was very misleading and upon going back to court without any counsel I was find and found guilty anyways because supposedly I had signed the document but they will not produce for me to see. Should they not have to produce a document and shouldn’t this be dismissed based on that fact. Thank you again for your help
 

quincy

Senior Member
n regards to the document with the check box that states I waved my right to counsel by signing the document. I never signed any documents stating that I would ever deny counsel. This was very misleading and upon going back to court without any counsel I was find and found guilty anyways because supposedly I had signed the document but they will not produce for me to see. Should they not have to produce a document and shouldn’t this be dismissed based on that fact. Thank you again for your help
If jail time is not a penalty for the offense ticketed, counsel is waived. This does not prevent you from hiring your own attorney to assist in fighting the ticket.
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
n regards to the document with the check box that states I waved my right to counsel by signing the document. I never signed any documents stating that I would ever deny counsel. This was very misleading and upon going back to court without any counsel I was find and found guilty anyways because supposedly I had signed the document but they will not produce for me to see. Should they not have to produce a document and shouldn’t this be dismissed based on that fact. Thank you again for your help
Was your intention to pay for your own attorney? That box doesn't mean you have the right to court appointed counsel...
 

quincy

Senior Member
n regards to the document with the check box that states I waved my right to counsel by signing the document. I never signed any documents stating that I would ever deny counsel. This was very misleading and upon going back to court without any counsel I was find and found guilty anyways because supposedly I had signed the document but they will not produce for me to see. Should they not have to produce a document and shouldn’t this be dismissed based on that fact. Thank you again for your help
As to what I have bolded above: No. Sorry.
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
Let's just put this to bed right here. Waiver of counsel wasn't required to be in writing: https://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/LegalResources/Rules/criminal/CriminalProcedure.pdf

RULE 44. Assignment of Counsel
(A) Counsel in serious offenses. Where a defendant charged with a serious offense
is unable to obtain counsel, counsel shall be assigned to represent him at every stage of the
proceedings from his initial appearance before a court through appeal as of right, unless the
defendant, after being fully advised of his right to assigned counsel, knowingly, intelligently, and
voluntarily waives his right to counsel.
(B) Counsel in petty offenses. Where a defendant charged with a petty offense is
unable to obtain counsel, the court may assign counsel to represent him. When a defendant
charged with a petty offense is unable to obtain counsel, no sentence of confinement may be
imposed upon him, unless after being fully advised by the court, he knowingly, intelligently, and
voluntarily waives assignment of counsel.
(C) Waiver of counsel. Waiver of counsel shall be in open court and the advice and
waiver shall be recorded as provided in Rule 22. In addition, in serious offense cases the waiver
shall be in writing.
(D) Assignment procedure. The determination of whether a defendant is able or
unable to obtain counsel shall be made in a recorded proceeding in open court.
[Effective: July 1, 1973.]
 
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