Seeing the police cherries suddenly flash in our rear-view mirror is a sight that stops most of us in our tracks, and of course, makes us pull over. Most of us are on our best behaviour around police cruisers just to avoid seeing that sight.
Most of us. But not all of us.
On a recent ride-along with York Regional Police, videographer Janet Lai and I witnessed one driver perfectly demonstrate “how to get a ticket.”
In the video below, the driver draws police attention by approaching the cruiser from behind with her highbeams glaring. After she passes, she neither moves out of the passing lane and into a driving lane, nor does she appear to have any intention of turning left in the near future.
Sgt. Ryan Hogan attempts to pull up alongside her at a red light to tell her to turn into a plaza, but is thwarted by other traffic. With no other option, Hogan is forced to initiate a traffic stop from the far left lane of three in our direction.
Watch as what started out as likely just a warning stop turns into an almost farcical low-speed chase.
Once stopped, the driver complains Hogan is not doing his job by “stopping a law-abiding driver” like her and that she was “unsure of what to do” when he attempted to pull her over – though pull right and stop for emergency vehicles is a standard question on every driver’s written test.
Taking it all in stride, Hogan issues a single ticket only – for “fail to carry insurance card,” the least costly of her many violations to choose from. (A computer check showed the vehicle was insured.)
Frankly, that’s much kinder than most of us would be in his place, since other possible charges included: fail to stop for police, fail to yield to emergency vehicle, fail to lower highbeams, driving in left lane at slower than normal rate or speed, dirty plate and colour-coating obscuring plate (tinted plate cover).
Incidentally, “no insurance card” charges are sometimes withdrawn by the prosecutor once you present a valid insurance card in court. So, deserved or not, this driver still got a huge break. Hopefully, she also learned a lesson.
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