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On January 6, 2014, Joanna W. was cited by motorcycle cop Purdy (#117) in Contra Costa County, CA for "holding her cell phone in her hand with an earbud." The woman, who had not even pled not guilty and never denied talking on her phone, relays the nightmare story of what happened when she tried to go pay the ticket.
Joanna appeared in Richmond Superior Court on March 6, 2014, which was stated as the due date on the ticket.
Deputy Clerk E. Rarey then refused to let her see the judge for her arraignment, and told her that "the ticket had not yet been filed." Rarey said told her to contact the court in a month, and signed a paper stating such.
On April 7, Joanna called the court and spoke to Pam at the Walnut Creek Central Traffic Unit. She was told that the ticket had still not been filed.
On May 2, her cousin received a courtesy notice sent to her address stating the ticket fee of $161. The letter stated that she could either pay the $161 fine or go to court. Since Joanna had since returned home to Colorado, she opted to pay the fine. (Apparently she was not aware of the Trial by Declaration option for all those ticketed in California.) The woman explained "I call the court and press the option on the phone tree to make a payment arrangement. I get transfered to "Alliance One" which says there is no record of the ticket. I check the internet URL, which also has no record of the ticket. At this point, I did not know what to do, so I waited."
She hears nothing back but keeps calling, and is told no one has any record of the ticket. She continues "On August 21, 2014 I received a letter forwarded, from the Court that I had Failed to Appear and that now the fine was increased to $486 by August 19, 2014." (Of course it is false that she "failed to appear" for her arraignment, since she showed up to court on the due date. The court's or officer's incompetence in failing to file the ticket is not the woman's fault.)
She then sent two response letters to the court via certified mail, which got no response.
On August 28 she called the court at 925-646-4099 and pressed the number for the payment plan, and was once again given the number for "Alliance One", who still had no record on file. They told her to call the court. (Note that the number she called, linked above at the court's website, IS the court's number.) On August 28 she then spoke to Marcie at Walnut Creek Central Traffic Unit "who said she could not reduce the fee to $161 but could stop it from going higher and that she would put the paperwork through to Alliance One. She told me that I should have called the Court prior my mistake was that I pressed the indicator on the phone tree for a payment plan (how was I to know this?) and was thus put through to the Collections Agency."
The amount was then raised to $486, then raised to $516. Ryan at "Alliance One" in Gig Harbor, Washington, informed Joanna of yet another $20 payment plan fee for a total of $536.
Despite all this, the court then sent her a letter threatening to suspend her license, issue a warrant for her arrest, and they raise the fine to almost $1000!:
"On August 30, 2014 I receive a letter (enclosed) dated August 25, 2014 in response to my hand-written letter, from the Court threatening to raise my fine to $816 if I do not pay the bail of $486 in full by September 3, 2014. The Court has also threatened to continue to increase the amount owed, suspend my license and make a warrant for my arrest. I have not yet received the Return Receipt Requested postcard from the Certified Letter."
She has filed a complaint with the Commission on Judicial Performance. Their # is 415-557-1200; Fax is or 415-557-1266. Their address is 455 Golden Gate ave, suite 14400, San Francisco, CA 94102
Joanna concludes that this is the "Most corrupt system I have ever encountered... They are out to FLEECE us - they are not reasonable at all... This is a ponzi scheme on the part of the state court system to fleece the California citizens because the state is bankrupt."
LibertyFight.com notes: This is a criminal enterprise who first off, gives tickets for bogus things. It is not against the law in CA to hold your cellphone, as proven by the recent CA Supreme Court ruling that holding a phone itself is not illegal. That case involved a guy who was using his phone GPS while driving. Secondly, when someone is issued a citation with an arraignment date, if the person shows up in court they have fulfilled their obligation and any "failure to appear" charge is completely invalid.
Believe it or not, this exact thing actually happened to me when I got a cell phone ticket the day the law went into effect, July 1, 2008. I got a ticket, and showed up for court in Los Angeles on the due date. The nasty court clerk said there was no record of my ticket, refused to let me see the judge, told me to wait, and the court then mailed me a letter threatening to issue a warrant for failure to appear and raising the fine to nearly $1000, and threatening to revoke my driver license. IMAGINE!! Imagine the criminality of this absolute satanic trash, as I wrote in my 2009 article How I beat a Cell Phone Ticket In California. This government is absolutely outrageous. This is precisely why everyone should fight every ticket- every time, no matter what. Two months ago I reported on another woman who got a cell phone ticket, and was then told by a Los Angeles County court that "Traffic Ticket Trials Are Not Allowed". Be sure to visit our TRAFFIC TICKET ARCHIVE SECTION here.
- How I beat a Speeding Ticket in California Superior Court of Appeals (Without A Lawyer) 8/19/14 [Featured on LewRockwell.com and EconomicPolicyJournal.com.]
- Former DOT Motor Carrier Investigator/Federal Inspector Decries "Rogue Officers" Engaged In "Abuse of Power"
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, LewRockwell.com, WhatReallyHappened.com, Infowars.com, PrisonPlanet.com, Economic Policy Journal, FreedomsPhoenix, Haaretz, TMZ, Veterans Today, Jonathan Turley blog, The Dr. Katherine Albrecht Show, National Motorists Association, AmericanFreePress.net, RomanCatholicReport.com, WorldNetDaily, OverdriveOnline.com, Educate-Yourself.org, TexeMarrs.com, Dr. Kevin Barrett's Truth Jihad radio show, Strike-The-Root.com, Pasadena Weekly, ActivistPost.com, Los Angeles Catholic Lay Mission Newspaper, KFI AM 640, IamtheWitness.com, Redlands Daily Facts, BlackBoxVoting, The Michael Badnarik Show, The Wayne Madsen Report, Devvy.com, Rense.com, The Contra Costa Times, Pasadena Star News, Silicon Valley Mercury News, Long Beach Press Telegram, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, L.A. Harbor Daily Breeze, CopBlock.org, DavidIcke.com, Whittier Daily News, KCLA FM Hollywood, The Fullerton Observer, Antiwar.com, From The Trenches World Report, and many others. Archives can be found at LibertyFight.com and DontWakeMeUp.Org.
DHS Calls Motorists' Employer to Tattle That They Won't Answer Questions At Warrantless Checkpoint (Article & 2 videos) 8/1/14
Motorist puts police in their place at suspicionless internal checkpoint December 2, 2012
[Must see video- Featured on PrisonPlanet.com].
Cop at Suspicionless Checkpoint Starts Barking Orders, But Then Flees from Camera [Featured on LewRockwell.com.]