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  1. #1
    Senior Member BesidesDaniel's Avatar
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    Police says, I'll put you in jail...

    So I'm biking to work today in Atlanta Ga. Beautiful day! I'm headed down a large hill on Peachtree st, (6 lane busy road) & got up some good speed and came up on an intersection that had about 6- 8 cars in each lane waiting on the light to change. I see there is not a lot of room on the far right side of the road so I ride in between a few cars til I can merge back over to the right side of the road as the light turns green. I happened to pass a cop on my left & he was really mad that I did this. I make it through the intersection fine & I'm steady up the next hill when I hear the cop behind me telling me to stop the bike. I'm kinda surprised that he stopped me. He asks for my license & I give it to him after he sees that I'm not very happy. He picks up his I'm a bad A s s cop attitude & starts to get very ugly.

    He then tells me to pick one... that I can ride on the far right or on the sidewalk. He asked me if I had ever been locked up & taken to jail & I said no. He asked me if I still lived at this address & I said yes. He then asked where I was goin & I said to work. He asked where I was coming from & I said my girlfriends house. He then accuses me of lying. asking me why I'm changing my story about where I live. He begins to treat me like a criminal, talking in very angry tone. I retort with a little sass. He asks me why I'd pull somethin like that if I saw him there. I said I didn't know there was a law against it. This makes him really mad. He then tells me that if he sees me out here on HIS roads like that again he would put me in jail!!!! I was amazed!

    I was very angry but I guess that he could have taken me in if he felt like it. He made this very clear. So I kissed his but really good & told him I understood & that I was sorry (just so I could get to work on time). He said he didn't feel like I was sorry & he explained that he didn't want to have to be the one to clean my brains up off the road.

    I do understand that It might not have been very safe of me to do but could he really put me in jail? I mean I really didn't know there was a law against this... Perhaps I'm a little naive to think he couldn't. But it seems like he thinks that he owns the roads we drive on. It's the taxpayers roads not his. He seems to think He can do whatever he wants. He can take me to jail if he wants, or make me late for work, or accuse me of being a liar or speak to me like I'm a criminal.

    WTF man?

    So I guess I'm just asking what anyone thinks about my conduct/his.... is there a law against this sort of behavior?

    Thanks!
    -danny

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by BesidesDaniel View Post
    So I guess I'm just asking what anyone thinks about my conduct/his.... is there a law against this sort of behavior?

    Thanks!
    -danny
    There are some ******* cops out there, you met one. File a complaint and hope enough other people do also. Give him the finger next time you see him.

  3. #3
    Conservative Hippie
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    Did you get his name, the time and location? Register a complaint with his department if you think you were wronged.

    I think it would be highly unlikely that he would haul you in on a traffic infraction. Law enforcement don't like paperwork any more than anybody else. But he can, especially if the person stopped gets mouthy with him, not to say that you did. Most likely he might write you a ticket. But the only way to fight a ticket in court is to prove you were in the right, and it's very helpful to know that ahead of time.

  4. #4
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    It is Legal in Texas and California.

    You may have just met one of these.....

    http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/met...e_academy.html
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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  5. #5
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    This type of incident is much easier to relate to if we can see it for ourselves on youTube or equivalent.

    Is there any chance you can invest in a helmet cam, for example the Oregon Scientific ATC2K, $87 and up, probably a lot cheaper if bought used on eBay or from Craigslist.org, or its equivalent.

    Regarding your specific incident, I don't think lane splitting is illegal in any state, and is actually encouraged in many states, most people know it better as "share the road". If I cannot lane split on approaching a line of stationary traffic, then ALL traffic cannot pass me using the same type of lane.

    A moving violation would have to be much more significant to warrant spending time in custody, for example using one vehicle to deliberately collide with and damage another vehicle. If there is any question with regard to your identity, then an officer can detain you until your identity has been ascertained - this is not the same as being under arrest.

    In most interactions with an officer, after you have identified yourself you are under no obligation to provide any further information.

    Officer asks "where are you going", how are you supposed to answer? "I'm going down this road, when I get to the bottom I may turn left, or right, depending on the traffic. Usually I like to turn left and stop at the Safeway for a hot soup. Sometimes, blah, blah, blah...."

    Officer asks "where are you going, what is your ultimate destination", how are you supposed to answer? "Well ultimately I guess my destination is my grave, I'm hoping it will take another 40 years to get there, at the moment I'm not sure of the route. Maybe I'll get to write the novel that is in me, blah, blah, blah...."

    You are driving your car in a 25 mph zone and you know you are well above the speed limit, officer asks you "do you know how fast you were going", you know you were doing 35, so you say "I think I might have been doing 28 to 30", wrong answer, you just provided a confession. The correct answer is "I'm sorry officer I do not know how fast I was going just a moment ago, can you please tell me?"

    If we are caught breaking [traffic] law, the officer should be specific and write a ticket, or write a warning and let you know what you were doing wrong. Always be polite and civil, but there is no need or reason to provide confessions or superfluous detail. The only person qualified to know if you are obliged to answer a question is your attorney, when he or she is sitting next to you.

    This is not legal advice, I am not practicing law.
    LOL The End is Nigh (for 80% of middle class North Americans) - I sneer in their general direction.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Sledbikes's Avatar
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    it could have been illegal to lane split in your town or state look it up it applies to bicycles as well i have the missfortune to learn the hardway once
    riding and pimpin again

  7. #7
    Senior Member dougmc's Avatar
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    Of course, if he really wants to arrest you, all he has to do is make up some charges and do it. It'll be your word against his, and to a court, his word is likely worth more -- and he knows it. And if a cop is going to lie to arrest you, your best defense is videotape that shows it. Uninterested/uninvolved witnesses are a distant second. But even if you have that (and he can't do something like destroy it), `you may beat the rap, but you won't beat the ride'.

    Not pissing him off, even when you're in the right, is probably the best plan.

    I don't know about Georgia, but in Texas the police can arrest you for any traffic violation except for speeding. (I'm not so sure what's so special about speeding, but if he really wants to, he just charges you with reckless driving too and he's good.) They usually don't, but it's an option.

  8. #8
    drive-by poster fetad's Avatar
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8z7N...eature=related

    This "Do not talk to the cops" video was posted on here a few months ago. It's long (30 min) but very entertaining.
    91' Bridgestone RB-T

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  9. #9
    Where am I?
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    HoustonB has it right. Next time, don't give him your driver's license. You aren't required to have it when cycling, and you are not required to provide him with anything other than your name.

    If you have committed a traffic violation, he can either give you a ticket or a warning. If you do not sign that ticket, then he may arrest you, but only then. Otherwise, keep your cool, don't speak, and let him run through his little routine to try and convince you to incriminate yourself.

    Make it so that if he arrests you, he has not one shred of purpose for it - if you don't speak and are very calm, he has nothing, and he will have a hell of a lot of explaining to do to his superiors if he actually does haul you in.

  10. #10
    Senior Member EatMyA**'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HoustonB View Post
    This type of incident is much easier to relate to if we can see it for ourselves on youTube or equivalent.

    Is there any chance you can invest in a helmet cam, for example the Oregon Scientific ATC2K, $87 and up, probably a lot cheaper if bought used on eBay or from Craigslist.org, or its equivalent.

    Regarding your specific incident, I don't think lane splitting is illegal in any state, and is actually encouraged in many states, most people know it better as "share the road". If I cannot lane split on approaching a line of stationary traffic, then ALL traffic cannot pass me using the same type of lane.

    A moving violation would have to be much more significant to warrant spending time in custody, for example using one vehicle to deliberately collide with and damage another vehicle. If there is any question with regard to your identity, then an officer can detain you until your identity has been ascertained - this is not the same as being under arrest.

    In most interactions with an officer, after you have identified yourself you are under no obligation to provide any further information.

    Officer asks "where are you going", how are you supposed to answer? "I'm going down this road, when I get to the bottom I may turn left, or right, depending on the traffic. Usually I like to turn left and stop at the Safeway for a hot soup. Sometimes, blah, blah, blah...."

    Officer asks "where are you going, what is your ultimate destination", how are you supposed to answer? "Well ultimately I guess my destination is my grave, I'm hoping it will take another 40 years to get there, at the moment I'm not sure of the route. Maybe I'll get to write the novel that is in me, blah, blah, blah...."

    You are driving your car in a 25 mph zone and you know you are well above the speed limit, officer asks you "do you know how fast you were going", you know you were doing 35, so you say "I think I might have been doing 28 to 30", wrong answer, you just provided a confession. The correct answer is "I'm sorry officer I do not know how fast I was going just a moment ago, can you please tell me?"

    If we are caught breaking [traffic] law, the officer should be specific and write a ticket, or write a warning and let you know what you were doing wrong. Always be polite and civil, but there is no need or reason to provide confessions or superfluous detail. The only person qualified to know if you are obliged to answer a question is your attorney, when he or she is sitting next to you.

    This is not legal advice, I am not practicing law.
    best answer if you want to be polite is "I'm sorry. I have nothing to say."

  11. #11
    Senior Member EatMyA**'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fetad View Post
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8z7N...eature=related

    This "Do not talk to the cops" video was posted on here a few months ago. It's long (30 min) but very entertaining.
    Good stuff. All true thanks. did you see the second part? That was enlightening.

  12. #12
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    About a week ago, I was stopped by some cops for bicycling near a Navy facility.

    "Good evening officer, how can I help you?"
    "Why were you riding your bikes back there?" (we were on a sidewalk and in parking lots, nowhere did we ever break any laws of any sort. We stopped to read some of the signs to figure out what the place was, and I noticed a video camera near the signs)
    "Um, just curious really."
    "ok, ok, you can go."

    It was odd, he hopped back in his car like we had the plague. Didn't say a thing about the fact that it was dusk and I'd forgotten my headlight.

    Always write down the name of the cop and the numbers on his car. Call up the police department and ask to file a complaint anytime you feel the officer violated your rights.

    I believe in many states you are required to give an officer ID if he requests it. This is not legal advice, just what I think I have heard is the truth, so don't qoute me on it.

  13. #13
    Senior Member dmac49's Avatar
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    Hummm, why do I get a feeling there's more to this.
    "I'm headed down a large hill on Peachtree st, (6 lane busy road) & got up some good speed and came up on an intersection that had about 6- 8 cars in each lane waiting on the light to change. I see there is not a lot of room on the far right side of the road so I ride in between a few cars "
    Great ambassador for the bicycle rider world. I'm not defending the cop, and definitely not defending your wonderful skills at weaving through traffic. So I guess the question is do bike riders want to be treated as vehicles with all the rights of vehicles or do we just want it to fit when it suits us. Just a thought.
    The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.
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  14. #14
    20+mph Commuter JoeyBike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BesidesDaniel View Post
    So I guess I'm just asking what anyone thinks about my conduct/his.... is there a law against this sort of behavior?
    We have a saying down here in New Orleans as related to the NOPD:

    "Survive The Experience"

    Saying "Yes Sir" and being polite is mandatory. Sometimes it's hard. But down here they can beat the snot out of you for giggles. Maybe your guy is a transfer from NOLA?

    And don't split lanes past a cop if you think he can catch you - especially if the light is red and he is at the front of the line of traffic!

    Last edited by JoeyBike; 10-18-08 at 08:26 PM.
    "For all we know his skills may be excellent, allowing him to ride like an idiot without actually being one." - FBinNY

  15. #15
    What is this demonry?! Szczuldo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BesidesDaniel View Post
    \

    So I guess I'm just asking what anyone thinks about my conduct/his.... is there a law against this sort of behavior?

    Thanks!
    -danny
    **** him, he's an ******* who is pissed off that he is getting fat and not getting any from his wife. I'd continue to ride that road, I was never big on splitting lanes though, then again in my town I don't really have to but I do if I won't make it in one cycle. You could always take the sidewalk real quick until the intersection if you are scared he'll do something about it.

    but cops, just like every other motorist, hate cyclists because they are saving money and their health, while the cagers are wasting money on gas in grid lock, on their fast food and getting heart attacks.

    EDIT:: This forum has WAY too many filters....a-hole and the word the a stands for are not bad...not to mention an ***** is a donkey in it's true form..

    edit 2:: honestly?....I'm feeling that my freedom of speech is ass-ass-inated

  16. #16
    50000 Guatts of power 127.0.0.1's Avatar
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    can't put you in jail at all

    at most you get a ticket for splitting lanes, and a traffic fine. cop is a blowhard.
    I like fat bikes
    and I cannot lie.

  17. #17
    Senior Member igoyippy4skippy's Avatar
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    Wait did I read this right? He told you to ride to the far right or on the sidewalk? Isn't it pretty much illegal almost anywhere to ride a bike on a sidewalk?
    If you are not crashin you are not riding hard enough

  18. #18
    What is this demonry?! Szczuldo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by igoyippy4skippy View Post
    Wait did I read this right? He told you to ride to the far right or on the sidewalk? Isn't it pretty much illegal almost anywhere to ride a bike on a sidewalk?
    if your going like maybe at most 10mph i think it's fine in most places, but yeah for the most part it is illegal to ride on the sidewalk/very damn unsafe to do so.

  19. #19
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 127.0.0.1 View Post
    can't put you in jail at all

    at most you get a ticket for splitting lanes, and a traffic fine. cop is a blowhard.
    Sorry to Disagree with you.
    I got put in Jail for Disturbing the Peace, When I was the only person with in one city block.
    Case dismissed by a Judge, but I still spent the night in jail.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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  20. #20
    Randomhead
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    Quote Originally Posted by igoyippy4skippy View Post
    Wait did I read this right? He told you to ride to the far right or on the sidewalk? Isn't it pretty much illegal almost anywhere to ride a bike on a sidewalk?
    stick around here long enough, and you'll figure out that's one of the things bikefo like to argue about. Personally, I think it should be highly illegal. I don't really care about the safety of the cyclist vs. car, I'm worried about pedestrians. The problem is that bike paths are often nothing more than converted sidewalks, so I guess I'm going to lose that battle.

  21. #21
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
    And don't split lanes past a cop if you think he can catch you - especially if the light is red and he is at the front of the line of traffic!
    Which video is that from?

    -Kurt

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    Quote Originally Posted by surveyor View Post
    HoustonB has it right. Next time, don't give him your driver's license. You aren't required to have it when cycling, and you are not required to provide him with anything other than your name.

    If you have committed a traffic violation, he can either give you a ticket or a warning. If you do not sign that ticket, then he may arrest you, but only then. Otherwise, keep your cool, don't speak, and let him run through his little routine to try and convince you to incriminate yourself.

    Make it so that if he arrests you, he has not one shred of purpose for it - if you don't speak and are very calm, he has nothing, and he will have a hell of a lot of explaining to do to his superiors if he actually does haul you in.
    Here in Chicago, a ticket is a form of arrest. Signing the ticket is also compliance to either appear on the court date given, or pay the fine via mail. Yes, you can refuse to talk or not give your identification, but you'll be taken in and name checked via fingerprints if the officer so desires, which can take up to 8 hours for your info to come back. The officer can also run your identification number via computer, this is the preferred method and takes the least amount of time. Your identity has to be confirmed either way prior to release. By all means, if you are feeling that your rights have been violated, file a complaint, it is your right. I know I would.

    There are police officers that continually give good officers a bad name by this type of attitude when dealing with the general public and it shouldn't be so. I have always prided myself on giving proper respect to all I encounter, whether I'm on the job or not. We have a tough enough job as it is and this just adds to the crap we have to deal with already.

    Daniel, I don't really know why the officer did what he did and I really don't want armchair quarterback the situation since I don't know both sides of the story, so my advice is that you speak to a supervisor and let them investigate the matter further.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Sledbikes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biker43 View Post
    Here in Chicago, a ticket is a form of arrest. Signing the ticket is also compliance to either appear on the court date given, or pay the fine via mail. Yes, you can refuse to talk or not give your identification, but you'll be taken in and name checked via fingerprints if the officer so desires, which can take up to 8 hours for your info to come back. The officer can also run your identification number via computer, this is the preferred method and takes the least amount of time. Your identity has to be confirmed either way prior to release. By all means, if you are feeling that your rights have been violated, file a complaint, it is your right. I know I would.

    There are police officers that continually give good officers a bad name by this type of attitude when dealing with the general public and it shouldn't be so. I have always prided myself on giving proper respect to all I encounter, whether I'm on the job or not. We have a tough enough job as it is and this just adds to the crap we have to deal with already.

    Daniel, I don't really know why the officer did what he did and I really don't want armchair quarterback the situation since I don't know both sides of the story, so my advice is that you speak to a supervisor and let them investigate the matter further.
    did you know in Chicago every time a city cop dies its a party on the South Side, Goodtimes
    riding and pimpin again

  24. #24
    Arrogant Safety Nanny
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    Sled that's uncalled for...biker43's nice enough to identify himself as a police office, offer an explanation and explain not all police officers are *******s and you go and tell him people celebrate police officers dying and toast those people with a beer?

    Biker just want you to know sled is in the minority here...I appreciate the job you do and I'm happy to see a "good cop" actually speaking up on a public forum.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Sledbikes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffB502 View Post
    Sled that's uncalled for...biker43's nice enough to identify himself as a police office, offer an explanation and explain not all police officers are *******s and you go and tell him people celebrate police officers dying and toast those people with a beer?

    Biker just want you to know sled is in the minority here...I appreciate the job you do and I'm happy to see a "good cop" actually speaking up on a public forum.
    i have had enough bad experiences with city cops to enjoy the celebration.
    riding and pimpin again

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