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Anyone else in NYC gotten a court summons for biking on the sidewalk?

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Anyone else in NYC gotten a court summons for biking on the sidewalk?

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Old 12-08-08, 10:51 AM
  #1  
Roy G. Biv
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Anyone else in NYC gotten a court summons for biking on the sidewalk?

So I finally have to go to court for a summons for biking on the sidewalk I got over the summer.
(Before you guys jump down my throat for riding on the sidewalk)
I literally rode on the sidewalk for the length of one block. The street I was on dead-ended at a red light and I was in a hurry and didn't want to wait for the light to change. I was only 2 blocks from my house and there was no one else on the sidewalk at all.

I'm not gonna throw the race card out there, but the first question the cops asked me was "Are you carrying any weapons or drugs" and then proceeded to inform me that there had been "a lot of crimes being committed by people on bikes around here" before even bringing up anything about biking on the sidewalk.

After running my license and everything coming up clean, they then proceed to write me a summons which requires a mandatory court appearance. I admit at this point I was a little annoyed about the situation and brought up the fact "I see white girls riding on the sidewalk everyday" and asked if he gives them tickets. He then said I was lucky and if they wanted they could put me in jail for riding on the sidewalk and put me in the "system.

Anyways the point of the post is to see if anyone else has already been through this process.
If so what happened?
Am I gonna have to pay a fine?
Is it gonna just be dropped?

Thanks.
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Old 12-08-08, 10:57 AM
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I have to appear in court too for "failing to stop at a red light". I am in Toronto thought.
The cop pulled me over and asked me for courier card, when I am not one and I don't see how that would change the situation. I don't even have a license and have to wait 8+ months to go to court , it's so stupid. I had been on a bike in Toronto for 2 weeks and didn't even that could happen.
 
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Old 12-08-08, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Roy G. Biv View Post
I'm not gonna throw the race card out there, but.....

....I was a little annoyed about the situation and brought up the fact "I see white girls riding on the sidewalk everyday" and asked if he gives them tickets..
but you did bring race into your story. do you feel like you're a victim of racism here? I've had 2 biking tickets in the last 4 months and i don't think racism (even though one cop was another race than me).
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Old 12-08-08, 11:06 AM
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uke
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Dude, you aren't "throwing the race card" when you point out someone was profiling; you're just pointing out racism. Don't let people put spin on your fundamental human right not to be treated like crap.

To address the sidewalk issue itself, yes, it's BS. If you go to court, just explain what you were doing, and the judge will probably throw it out.
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Old 12-08-08, 11:12 AM
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I haven't gotten a ticket for it, but I very, very rarely do it. Though, this morning I had to hop on the sidewalk twice for complete bottlenecks -- where oversized utility trucks were wedged beside buses and partially in the oncoming lanes, bringing all traffic (including bikes) to a standstill. Good luck though, sorry to hear it.
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Old 12-08-08, 11:50 AM
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I see no problem bringing race up as a legitimate complaint against law enforcement.

Anyone who thinks that racism isn't a concern when it comes to people, especially those in a position of authority, is either naive or deluded.
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Old 12-08-08, 12:40 PM
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You've got to admit though, it would be pretty freaky to see some rainbow colored dude riding a bike down a city sidewalk...
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Old 12-08-08, 01:07 PM
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[quote=uke;7985152]Dude, you aren't "throwing the race card" when you point out someone was profiling; you're just pointing out racism. Don't let people put spin on your fundamental human right not to be treated like crap. QUOTE]

I 2nd this. The fact that you were pulled over in that area while cycling (if you reallly had seen several white females doing the same thing without having issues) [b]combined[b] with the way you were spoken to (threatened for arrest over cycling on the sidewalk? Give me a break!) after you inquired about the motives for doing so I think represents a decent likelyhood that some racial profiling was taking place. I can't stand racist cops...

And I'm white if anyone cares.... (not that it is relevant)
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Old 12-08-08, 01:17 PM
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what neighborhood, Roy G. Biv?
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Old 12-08-08, 01:21 PM
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ive been stopped for WALKING my bike home on my own block, for not having a helmet.
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Old 12-08-08, 01:26 PM
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i'm not in NY but I have been yelled at by the same meter maid like 6 times for biking on the sidewalk. Usually I am biking on the sidewalk so I can lock up my bike before going into a business/classroom building that is on that sidewalk. Same ***** made me walk a block so I could lock my bike to an actual bike rack instead of the parking meter when I was just running into a store to grab one thing.
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Old 12-08-08, 01:58 PM
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Hah, if you wanna be a real smartass and get a ticket, tell the officer you will stop riding on the sidewalk when they remove all the parallel grates and people stop speeding.
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Old 12-08-08, 02:04 PM
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i got the same ticket at fulton and grand a few months ago. but it got dropped via the mail before i was due in court. i came to a rolling stop off the street and dismounting a few feet on the sidewalk. the two cops were total @ssho1es as usual. telling me to "stand against that wall!" and "keep your hands out of your pockets!" i figured i'd get a warning but sure enough they wrote me a ticket. i mentioned "this is why no one respects cops" as i was leaving. i went the few blocks back home and got my digital camera and took a few photos of the massive construction on fulton to use as evidence if i needed a viable excuse. the two cops watched me from the laundry mat across the street. i don't know if that's why my ticket got thrown out. but maybe take some BS photos of something that looks like "hazardous conditions" on that block to have ready. i also read someplace that tickets for riding a bike on the sidewalk can only be issued by the EPA and a ticket issued for that particular offense by the police is null and void as its outside of their jurisdiction. good luck.
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Old 12-08-08, 02:07 PM
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BTW the NYC vehicle code says they can only arrest you and impound your bike if you were posing a serious safety risk to other pedestrians on the sidewalk. fast erratic riding, hit and run with a pedestrian etc...
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Old 12-08-08, 02:10 PM
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I went through essentially the same thing last year...

A year ago, I was riding home (Prospect Heights, Brooklyn) and was biking the wrong way on a one-way street since I live halfway down the block (didn't want to circle around, it's a really long block.) Unmarked cop car pulled me over and two cops patted me down, asking if I had anything on me they should know about. I said, "Like what?" [NOTE: wrong thing to say!] They threatened to take me in.

I ended up getting a court summons. Went in to court a few months later. Waited. When they started the process, the judge clarified that this was just an opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty, not a chance to defend yourself. If you plead not guilty, you have to come back, and 90% of the time, you lose, because it's your word against the officer's. So the judge encouraged everyone to just please guilty, in which case you pay a fine (~$50-75, I think) and they knock the charge down to a violation (from a misdemeanor.) Most of the people there were called in for things like public urination or public consumption. So when I was called up for the biking incident, the judge just gave me an ACD (Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal,) which is like delayed dismissal (the charge gets thrown out after 6 months, assuming you don't find yourself in court again within that time frame.) Hopefully, you'll get an ACD or a dismissal, but if the judge gives you a fine, just pay it. You won't win if you plead not guilty.

The trial would go something like this...

"NYPD vs. You"

JUDGE:You have been charged with a cycling-related misdemeanor by Officer Doe of the NYPD, how do you plead?
YOU: Not guilty
JUDGE: Please state your case
YOU: Officer Doe wrongly stopped me when I was riding my bike. I was not in violation of any laws.
OFFICER: No, that's incorrect, I cited him for riding on the sidewalk.
JUDGE: Were you riding on the sidewalk?
YOU: No.
JUDGE: Was he riding on the sidewalk?
OFFICER: Yes.
JUDGE: Case closed. The defendant is found guilty and charged with the misdemeanor and fine of $300.
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Old 12-08-08, 02:18 PM
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Yeah the whole court system in cases like this is a joke, really.

I've had similar experiences with cops. You break the law by going on the sidewalk for like 2 seconds, and get pulled over, then they flip the **** out and treat you like some hardened criminal. It's sad, really.

I'm not saying there aren't good cops out there, but they are in the minority. And, it is a fact that there is no "lowest" IQ a cop can have and still be a cop. But there is a highest. Someone I went to college with ended up becoming an officer and explained to me that the rationale behind this was because intelligent people question authority too much.

Interesting.
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Old 12-08-08, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Roy G. Biv View Post
"a lot of crimes being committed by people on bikes around here"
Uh yeah, i think it's safe to say this was racial profiling.
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Old 12-08-08, 03:12 PM
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Yea I had the feeling it might be the same process as a public urination charge (ended up with one of those a few years back)
The funny thing was I told one of the cops I would rather just pay him a fine instead of having to waste my time having to appear in court and he accused me of trying to bribe him.
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Old 12-08-08, 03:23 PM
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I got a ticket in Newport RI for riding the wrong way on a one way street ( I was zig zagging back to the house I was staying @, it was 9:00 in the morniing and zero traffic.
I didn't pay it and a few years later, I got a notice in the mail saying I had a moving violation - driving a motorcycle the wrong way up Thames... thank God I gave him a bogus SSN.
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Old 12-08-08, 03:28 PM
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The "race card" sounds like something you might chuck in your spokes to go faster
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Old 12-08-08, 03:35 PM
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Rly? I need a race card for my front wheel!!!
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Old 12-08-08, 03:38 PM
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i feel like cops at my school don't care about bikes on the sidewalk, which makes sense when you think about what the police here are really looking out for (i go to virgina tech)

that said, i'd rather not ride on the sidewalk, i can't tell you how many times dummies sending text messages have walked straight into me or just stopped altogether...glad for my front brake
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Old 12-08-08, 08:38 PM
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yesterday on ludlow some clown laid on his horn as he yelled "hey ******- why don't you ride your bike on the sidewalk?" i asked him why doesn't he ride his minivan in new jersey..

admittedly not the most clever retort, but its all i could think of on the fly. i should have told him i didn't want a court summons
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Old 12-08-08, 08:48 PM
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Originally Posted by jaggd View Post
JUDGE: Case closed. The defendant is found guilty and charged with the misdemeanor and fine of $300.
that's a lot! the most expensive speeding ticket i've gotten is $150!
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Old 12-09-08, 01:41 AM
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Judge wants a new wheel
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