California Motorist beats Seat-Belt Ticket Through the Mail Using Constitutional Argument
By Martin Hill
June 19, 2013


- How I beat a Speeding Ticket in California Superior Court of Appeals (Without A Lawyer) 8/19/14
- Traffic Ticket Archives
A California man who has previously beaten four traffic infraction tickets through the mail has beaten his fifth ticket using the TRIAL BY DECLARATION option, which is available to all motorists ticketed in California. John Shanahan of Southern California, who's a Constitutionalist, electrical engineer and a licensed member of Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, just received the court ruling for his seat belt ticket. His previous victory was only four months ago on February 15th, when he beat a nearly $600 red-light camera ticket through the mail. [Here is the Shanahan Archive Page with all the cases.]

What's interesting is that John never denied not wearing his seatbelt and used a Fourth Amendment defense in his court declaration, and was found not guilty by the judge. This is his third ticket for not wearing a seat belt ticket that he has beaten through the mail.

Technically, Shanahan was found not guilty of the latest seat-belt offense because the officer, who is the witness for the prosecution, did not submit a response to the Trial by declaration. However, Shanahan always brings up the Constitution in his traffic declarations and no officer in any case has yet taken the time to rebuke the arguments- which is interesting in itself- hence, John wins every time. Why don't the cops ever respond? Perhaps because in the age of the internet, they fear that their written documented response against a Constitutional defense will be plastered all over the internet, forcing them to face ridicule for years to come.

Also, unlike in person court trials, officers do not collect overtime for going to the courthouse if it's a trial by declaration, so they have to take their own time and write up responses to court filings. If the cop is too lazy to do the work and doesn't reply, it's considered a 'lack of prosection' and the defendant wins.

Here's all the court filings or if you want the short version, here is the Trial by dec. attachment (John's main argument in written form) and The minute order from the judge pronouncing him NOT GUILTY.

In his declaration, Shanahan stated, in part,

"Judge, since I was not hurting anyone or driving irresponsibly, the act of a police officer stopping me is certainly a violation of his oath to protect the U.S. Constitution and my rights under the 4th Amendment. I would have understood if he had just given me a repair ticket for the headlight. Since I have 2 engineering degrees, I have taken more than one course in statistics. I would strongly question the results of any traffic safety study which tries to conclude that wearing seat belts is safer than NOT wearing them...

"It is up to me to provide for my own safety, not Officer Lepe and the "nanny state" government supervisors who give him his orders. If I had to find them, I know that I could produce various Supreme Court cases that clearly state that the police have no charter or responsibility to protect individual people. Your Honor, in view of the constant degeneration of our individual rights that are supposed to be protected by the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights, the whole idea that I could be given a citation because Officer Lepe or the California General Assembly thinks that they know better how to provide for my safety than I do is absolutely outrageous. This is the type of intrusion that is so offensive when we are so close to losing our country due to other federal government actions (especially the Federal Reserve). Officer Lepe's action, while giving him his perceived appearance of merely enforcing the law, actually makes it appear to me and others that he is simply a bagman or revenue agent for big government."

The excellent free website has all the information California motorists need to beat their tickets. I first found the site in 2001 and have beaten about 15 tickets since then; one in California Superior Court of Appeals, in which a three-judge panel ruled for me and overturned a phony speeding ticket conviction. Here is their information on TRIAL BY DECLARATION. If a California motorist loses the trial by declaration, they are entitled to a brand new trial (not an appeal) called a TRIAL DE NOVO. This is all spelled out in the California Vehicle Code. It is truly a peice of cake. Countless family and friends of ours have beaten tickets using these methods, by simply invoking the CA vehicle code and exerting their right to due process and the presumption of innocence. Even my 19 year old niece, who probably weighs less than 100 lbs and had never even been to court in her life, has beaten 3 tickets- the first three she ever got: a stop sign ticket, a seat belt ticket, and a parking ticket. site is great and Geo McCalip should be applauded for his public service. Here is an interview with McCalip from a few years ago.

I also asked a few questions of John Shanahan. He had not sent his replies as of publication time so we will have his answers later today.

John, this is your fifth traffic ticket victory featured on, and a hearty congratulations goes out to you. Why do you get so many tickets? Are you a bad driver or is this just a revenue scheme?

Why did you start fighting tickets through the mail? Is it difficult?

Are you anti-government?

I understand youre a licensed member of of Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth. Tell me about that.

If you could send one message to Californians and Americans who are reading this what would it be?

Here are John's four prior victories along with court documents. Also be sure to check out our archives below.

Constitutionalist beats seat belt ticket through the mail - Read this short article to see how easily one can fight and beat a traffic ticket through the mail in California. Jan. 18, 2009

Defendant wins stop sign ticket through the mail using 'TRIAL BY DECLARATION'
Motorist refers to traffic cops as "revenue agents (bagmen) for the government", wins case Oct. 30, 2009

Freedom advocate beats third traffic ticket through the mail (This was John's second seat belt ticket victory, Oct. 25, 2010.)

Ca motorist beats fourth traffic ticket through the mail (Corona red-light camera ticket- court documents on page.)

Martin Hill is a Catholic paleoconservative and civil rights advocate. His work has been featured in the Los Angeles Daily News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, The Orange County Register, KNBC4 TV Los Angeles, The Press Enterprise,,,,, Economic Policy Journal, FreedomsPhoenix, Haaretz, TMZ, Veterans Today, Jonathan Turley blog, The Dr. Katherine Albrecht Show, National Motorists Association,,, WorldNetDaily,,,, Dr. Kevin Barrett's Truth Jihad radio show,, Pasadena Weekly,, Los Angeles Catholic Lay Mission Newspaper, KFI AM 640,, Redlands Daily Facts, BlackBoxVoting, The Michael Badnarik Show, The Wayne Madsen Report,,, The Contra Costa Times, Pasadena Star News, Silicon Valley Mercury News, Long Beach Press Telegram, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, L.A. Harbor Daily Breeze,,, Whittier Daily News, KCLA FM Hollywood, The Fullerton Observer,, From The Trenches World Report, and many others. Archives can be found at and DontWakeMeUp.Org.


Motorist puts police in their place at suspicionless internal checkpoint December 2, 2012 [Must see video- Featured on].

Cop at Suspicionless Checkpoint Starts Barking Orders, But Then Flees from Camera [Featured on]



Red-Light Traffic Cameras Archive Page

Why everyone should fight their traffic tickets- every time

Police remove phony legal threat from their red-light camera website after being exposed by LibertyFight October 23, 2012[Featured on and]

How I beat a $700 ticket in 30 seconds in court [featured on]

How I beat a Cell Phone Ticket In California 4/24/09

NOTE: Visit our new website DontWakeMeUp.Org - Trucker's Civil Rights for more information on the Federal Civil Rights Lawsuit filed against the Texas Troopers for illegally demanding ID. You can also join the mailing list for updates.

Oppressing the poor and defrauding a laborer of his just wages: "sins that cry out to Heaven for vengeance"
Pope St. Leo I condemns "unrighteous and shameless avarice," and explains that "usury of money is the death of the soul."

Lunatic CHP cops go berzerk as female motorist successfully demands her rights under CA Vehicle code 3/22/13 [Featured on , Economic Policy Journal, From the Trenches World Report , The Daily Paul ,, and]

Obnoxious CHP cop tries to make people stop filming him 3/24/13.

City of Corona, CA claims that traffic defendants must be compelled to testify August 21, 2012
City continues giving fraudulent legal advice to ensnare motorists [Featured on]

Corona, CA to Axe red-light camera program on Guy Fawkes day September 15, 2012

San Bernardino, CA terminates red-light-camera program, but doesn't tell the public December 20, 2012 [Featured on]

Motorist puts police in their place at suspicionless internal checkpoint December 2, 2012
[Must see video- Featured on].

CA introduces "AB 666", an evil scheme to fleece motorists and eviscerate their rights
Proposed law would make it nearly impossible for Californians to fight red-light camera tickets 3/25/13 [This article was featured on, , Economic Policy Journal , and I was a guest on Dr. Kevin Barret's radio show Wednesday March 27th discussing the article and related issues. The MP3 can be heard here (2nd hour.)