Stop Signs and Railroad Crossings

Let me begin by saying I am not seeking legal advice, but general opinion on how to proceed.

The other day, I was cited for running a stop sign (I’m innocent, I tell you! :rolleyes: ) in New mexico. The officer provided the following state statute regarding my alleged infraction - "66.7.341---- (thru) 66.7.345 http://law.justia.com/newmexico/codes/2006/nmrc/jd_ch66art7-17d7d.html on the ticket…

I thought I had a slam dunk case at winning, as all of these references relate to railroad crossings (except for the last one), and that the last one refers to where one must stop at a stop sign (i.e. before the crosswalk lines) IMHO.

Well, at magistrate court today, the judge ruled in favor of the officer, saying that I did in fact run the stop sign…

Well, the kicker in the case is that there is no railroad crossing within miles of the intersection… I want to appeal it, but I am not sure if I should proceed, or just tuck my tail between my legs and go home :smack:

I beleive the judge should have referenced 66.7.330 http://law.justia.com/newmexico/codes/2006/nmrc/jd_66-7-330-18619.html for the correct statute that regulates stop signs…

What do you folks think??? ( I have the “right” to appeal to the district court, but I am not sure it is worth it!). Also, as an aside, i was not allowed to question the officer as to the alleged violation… Maybe I am watching to much television, but I thought I was able (had the right) to do that :confused:

Please provide any input you folks can… I look forward to all responses!

Generally, courts do use common sense on things.

So if an officer cites you for “running a stop sign” and then puts down statute number 123.45 when it should be 123.54, that isn’t a magic freebie that lets you off. You still ran a stop sign, and despite the officer forgetting the exact statute number, the court is going to find you guilty of that.

Just like the magistrate did.

If you’re really innocent, concentrate on convincing the court of that, instead of bringing up all this stuff about railroad crossings and the mistaken statute number that the officer put down. All that just confuses the issue, and judges are likely to disregard it. And to think that you are concentrating on this because you really don’t have any defense to the actual charge of running a stop sign.

So you actually didn’t stop before the crosswalk lines, but you think you should get off because of a technicality on how the officer wrote the ticket?

Pay your fine.

I was a bit confused at the OP for a moment - I soon realized that he was talking about the cop making a ‘clerical’ error on his ticket, but initially I thought he was talking about this:
http://wwwdelivery.superstock.com/WI/223/1525/PreviewComp/SuperStock_1525R-102688.jpg - Stop sign on railroad crossing post - which I believe requires the driver to come to a full stop before proceeding across the railroad crossing, much like most states require school buses and fuel trucks to do.

I see the OP didn’t have any luck so far with his question on FreeAdvice.com either:
http://forum.freeadvice.com/speeding-other-moving-violations-13/stop-signs-railroad-crossings-542605.html

No, the cop cited the correct law 66-7-345.

That is the law that says if there is a stop sign, you must stop, and then also tells you where to stop, with options for the various situations.

66-7-330 is actually about Right of Way, and refers to 66-7-345 for definition of Stop.

So you are trying to assert that the laws you are cited of violating do not apply, but you are wrong. The judge has it right.

If you actually stopped, then your argument should be about that, but if you actually ran the stop sign, or did a “rolling stop”, i.e. slowed down but didn’t actually stop, then you are in violation of the law.

Now with regards to questioning the officer, I do not know about that. What are you going to do: “Mr. officer, did you actually see me not stop? Really? Can you prove it?” Sorry, in legal terms, the officer is taken at his word.