Categories: Advice

Ok, You Got Pulled Over for Speeding. What Now?

Let's face it, if you own a Porsche the chances are better than average that at some point you will get pulled over for speeding. I know, I know, you were only on the go pedal for a minute, you just wanted to feel that pulse quickening acceleration or hear that sonorous sound of your exhaust. Maybe you were unfairly profiled for driving a Porsche. Whatever the reason, most of us are bound to get pulled over at some point. If you don't know how to avoid a speeding ticket, in the first place, then how you act and what you do after being stopped will play a bigger role in the outcome than what you did to get pulled over.

First Step Toward Beating a Speeding Ticket: Set the Police Officer at Ease!

Most police officers will tell you the most dangerous type of calls they respond to are those involving domestic violence. The reason is they simply don't know what they are walking into. Making a traffic stop is a very close second. The officer can get some information by running your plates, but it's no guarantee that the person behind the wheel is the same as who the car is registered to. They have limited visibility into your car, they can't always see your hands and don't have any idea why you were speeding. How you react as the police office approaches your car plays a huge roll in the outcome of this event. While a well trained officer is never going to let their guard down, you can help to relax them, even just a little. After being pulled over you might consider doing the following:

  • Don't make any sudden movements
  • If it is night time turn on the interior light in your car so the officer can see inside
  • Roll down your driver's side window so the officer doesn't have to ask you to do so
  • Instead, put both your hands on the steering wheel, in plain site so it is easy to see you're not carrying any kind of weapon that could be a threat to the police officer's personal safety.

Second Step Toward Beating a Speeding Ticket: Be Respectful!

This is perhaps the most important thing you can do. Sure, you're frustrated, maybe even mad at getting pulled over. The absolute worst things you can do is take it out on the officer. Ever seen this guy before (warning, there's a bit of swearing)? It's a miracle he wasn't thrown in jail!

The video above is a great example of what not to do. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Above all else, be courteous. Like it or not the police officer is just doing their job.
  • Be calm. The officers level of intensity will most likely always be one level above yours, it has to be. Keep cool and level and the officer will too.
  • If you followed my advice from the first step, then your window is down and your hands are on the steering wheel. When the police officer asks for your license and registration, let him know where they are and ask if it is okay to reach for them. For example, "Officer, my registration is in the glove box and my license is in my wallet, is it okay for me to reach and get them?"
  • This is a highly stressful situation for the officer (whether they seem it or not). You can put them at ease with your actions and demeanor.

Lastly, Plead Your Case, but Not Too Hard

Some times, when being pulled over for speeding, a police officer has estimated your speed vs. capturing it on a radar gun. In these instances you're very likely to here these questions, "Do you know why I pulled you over?" Or, another favorite is, "Do you know how fast your were going?" These questions server a number of purposes for the officer, not only could they get you to admit guilt (which could later be used against you if you try to fight a ticket) they are also using it as a tactic to engage you in a conversation to judge your mental faculties and listen to you speak (in other words, determine if you're under the influence of alcohol or drugs). Assuming you're not high or drunk (if you are, you're on your own) a simple, polite, non-committal approach is the best way to answer these questions. You might try a simply "no" to answer the first and a "I'm sorry, I was focusing on driving safely and the traffic around me."

If the officer tells you that you were clocked on radar going 80mph in a 50mph zone, you still don't have to admit guilt, but you might want to try pleading your case. Remember, the officer has discretion and if you were polite and courteous they can still let you off with a warning or a reduced fine. An important distinction to remember is that you want to beat the ticket and the system, not the police officer.

Two arguments that have been known to work (but are by no means fool proof) are crying and by telling the truth. If you were speeding and you think there was a legitimate reason for it, by all means let the officer know. Are you rushing to get home because of an emergency? Has a loved one been injured, etc. While not an excuse, the truth might just set you free.

So remember:

  1. Be Calm
  2. Be Respectful
  3. If Appropriate, Plead Your Case

I know this post could potentially open a big can of worms as most people will have an opinion on what works and what doesn't, so let's hear 'em. I'll take the best and add it to the list when I update the article. Check back in a couple of weeks for a follow up on iwhat to do in the event you get a speeding ticket.

Related Posts
Red Light and Speed Cameras: How They Work and How to Avoid Them
3 Tips to Avoiding a Speeding Ticket in Your Porsche
Things to Consider if you're Going to Drive Fast in Your Porsche
Slower Traffic Keep Right!!! Please?

[Photo Credit: Richard Faulder via Flickr]

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View Comments (14)

  • All the above is very good stuff, this from one who has contested and overcome a bunch of speeding tickets over the years.

    In at least three cases I've had the officer give me a pass just because I responded as suggested above. The immediate relief they feel when they find out they are not dealing with a belligerent jerk or a dangerous scumbag should not be underestimated.

    At least three other times, the "supporting deposition" request worked. If an SD is not supplied in the prescribed time the judge will dismiss the charges. Cops are like the general population, some of us are diligent note takers and paperwork handlers , many of us are not. In at least one case, the local traffic court forgot to request the SD when I mailed back my summons. An important enhancement to this strategy is to make your exhange with the officer as vanilla and forgettable as possible. He/she will be less likely to take the notes neccessary for an SD.

    NOTE; the SD technique will not work when the officer has the latest technology, which allows him to print and present an SD on the spot.

    A few more "stats"-

    - none of these works nearly 100%.
    - as a Police Ofiicer told me once - we're just like the rest of the population - 5% are jerks.

  • I couldn't agree more. There is some great advice here. Not only on what to do, but also on exactly what not to do. I have gotten one or two speeding tickets before, and have avoided four or five of them. The times I didn't win is because I didn't do all I could to avoid them, and perhaps let my temper get the best of me, for whatever the reason.

    The times I have been able to avoid getting a ticket is because i was able to immediately establish a rapport with the officer. I wouldn't speak unless spoken to, and when I did speak tried to project as calm and comfortable and respectful demeanor as possible. And that always made all the difference, as well as following the protocol outlined above (hands on the wheel, etc.).

  • John Killion and I do the same things, and have had the same experiences. The truth and politeness will set you free almost always.

  • I've had great success over 30 years with the little pedal on the right.

    If the bogy is coming at me and I know I'm 20 miles over the limit I'll kick it down a gear or TWO and make my way to a good side street and weave my way back to an alternative route.

    If it's a speeding trap I banzai down the road to a hidden u-turn. Then I'll either wait in a secluded spot or park in a crowded shopping center.

    One suggestion, If you've got any doubts following through this won't work for you.

    Downside- Today they might shoot you!

  • I have used all of the above suggested "techniques" successfully when pulled over in my 911....a total of 3 pullovers. All are true. And, yes, it does help a lot to run a V1. But the most important piece of advice? It really helps being a woman. I know it's wrong. I know it isn't fair. I don't flirt or act coy...I am just respectful and as pleasant as possible. I admit I haven't been pulled over by a female officer, so I cannot attest to what that situation might bring my way (I suspect it might not go as well). But there is no denying that officers do tend to let a woman in a Porsche slide more often than they do a man. In my BMW wagon? Not so lucky.
    Don't hate the player, hate the game.

  • Leave your seat belt fastened! Sometimes they will write a ticket for a lesser infraction, which is a kinder way of still letting you know you broke the law, but won't put points on your license. I did each of the suggested points, but had unbuckled to get out my wallet, which I had placed on the dash. Not wearing a seat belt cost me big bucks, but it was still a lot cheaper than 30+ over the limit.

  • If you have a radar detector mounted on your windshield, do all you can to stealthily take it down and hide it before the officer gets to your window; did this in my 911 Cab and the officer was acting like he was going to let me off until he saw my Valentine V1 laying in the back floorboard. Unfortunately I had the top down and he could look straight back there; he said "does your Valentine radar detector work pretty good?", LOL, I was Toast...next time the detector goes either in the glovebox or way up under the seat. Yeah, a cop sees a radar detector and you can pretty much expect no leniency....btw, they are legal in my state, Alabama.