why did the cops not pull me over?

so i was driving an unregistered car with no plates. on a pretty busy road and there was a cop right behind me. and he did not pull me over!! why did he not?

How should we know? Could be one of a zillion reasons.

*Busy road, lots of cars, didn’t notice no plates on your car. You try looking at the plates of every single car on a busy road at all moments.

*Lazy. Incompetent. On his/her way back to base at end of shift.

*Maybe he/she was on their way to an assignment. Most calls do not require lights/siren/speed. Not going to blow off an assignment for a minor traffic infraction. We’ll get you next time.

*Coming back from court or an investigation, not in his/her jurisdiction.

*Retirement date is nearing, doesn’t give a fuck. It’s a glorious feeling, believe me you!
But if you really want to know, go turn yourself in. Make sure you have a pocket full of illegal drugs when you do. (I shit you not. it happened recently. Dude turned himself in for a warrant and was shocked that I searched him and then charged him for having some crystal in his pocket!)

I find it hard to believe a cop would miss the absence of a license plate. It’s one of those things we (licensed drivers) expect to see. I’d think a bumper uninterrupted by a different colored blob would tend to jump out at you.

Of course, I’m not a cop or at all familiar with law enforcement personnel. (I still try to figure out what all they cram into those belts.)

Moderator Action

Unless someone actually tracks down the officer in question, I don’t think it’s possible to answer this factually. Since that leaves us mostly with opinion and speculation, let’s move this over to IMHO.

Moving thread from General Questions to In My Humble Opinion.

I think you may have hit them all.

We had (have but he doesn’t seem to drive any more) who had one of the top 3 worst driving records in the state. He never had a valid license. He is suspended for life. And he would drive around in a very distinctive vehicle. You could get him just about every night. Each of us had those days when we just couldn’t muster up the mental energy to deal with the same bullshit again and he would get away with it for that night. There is always tomorrow.

I heard this a long time ago and I have used it from time to time. Often when someone gets pulled over they complain that others were doing the same thing so why didn’t I stop them too?

“Officer, the guy behind me was speeding too! Why didn’t you stop him?”
“You ever been fishing?”
“Yes. What does that have to do…?”
“You ever catch all the fish?”

You were one of the fish that got away.

You were white?


Wait…cops actually retire? I didn’t know this.

I thought they were all just killed three days before.
Related to the thread: I heard on the radio some time ago (so clearly it’s 100% true) that (insert high percentage here) of cop cars you see on the road are the “take home car” type, and that most of the cars are driven by off duty officers

A couple of days ago I noticed that the car in front of me had a June 2012 registration sticker on their license plate.

Made me wonder how often she’d been driving that car unregistered (and presumably uninsured) without getting pulled over.

Related to the OP - here in Michigan, when a vehicle is sold the seller keeps the license plate. Last summer I bought a used vehicle from a private party and drove it about 20 miles home with no plate/registration at all. Isn’t there some sort of allowance for that if you’ve just purchased a vehicle, have a bill of sale and insurance?

I am not a cop, but I’m marrying one. pkbites hit most of the reasons: many cops don’t want to fill out the requisite paperwork, also remember that just because a cop is in a cop car does not mean that the cop is on duty, or even in his/her jurisdiction.

Just one thing I want to add: particularly in rough neighborhoods/areas, cops are discriminate about the kinds of people they pull over. If a person looks out of place, or is otherwise acting suspiciously, the cop is much more likely to pull the person over. If a routine traffic stop leads to a discovery of stolen handguns, illegal drugs, etc., it’s worthwhile; a traffic stop that leads only to a ticket for said infraction is less worthwhile. Maybe you just didn’t look suspicious.

*It was raining and the cop didn’t think it was worth standing in the rain to write you a ticket.

So why was incarceration not an option? What’s the point of a law if law enforcement can’t/don’t enforce it??

Your must have been INVISIBLE!!

I drive my Corolla in stealth mode all the time (as evidenced by the actions of all the larger vehicles around here).

Isn’t it obvious? The cops didn’t pull you over because you are D’ Man! :wink:

Incarceration for what? Driving while suspended is not an arrestible offense here. Other than DUI it has to be at least ten years since I have seen anyone arrested for a motor vehicle violation. If you get enough suspensions you do go to jail. But that’s at sentencing.

As for the enforcement question, there is something called discretion. The public would not be very unhappy if all discretion was taken away, especially for motor vehicle violations.

He was distracted by your broken shift key.

Don’t know about Joisey but here we can arrest and demand bond for any violation of law.

We don’t.

Unless the person is from a state not connecting Wisconsin (for some reason “connecting state” includes Indiana :confused: ) traffic violators just get a cite.

WI is not a member of the national drivers compact and if we don’t force bond for out state residents would never pay the fines.

But if I wanted to I could arrest a Wisconsin driver for a burnt out tail light. Not that the booking staff or judges would be real happy with that.

Pretty much the same. When I first started the watch commander had blanket authority to set $500 bail for motor vehicle warrants. Now we have to go to a judge. You better be able to prove that the defendant has a huge amount of FTAs or else the judge will not even think about it. The judge still won’t be happy unless there are some serious extenuating circumstances. So we write the summons and if they don’t show up or pay a warrant will be issued for contempt. No one even thinks about getting a warrant. Even DUIs (with exceptions) are catch and release but of course there is an arrest for processing.