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Seatbelt scam...

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RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

So does the VIPD normally stand at the entrance/exit of shopping centers and flag people down to ticket them for not wearing (or they think you're not wearing) a seatbelt? Was quite odd to sit there with an officer writing us out not one, but two tickets for HER PERCEPTION that we were not wearing seatbelts, yet watching car after car after car going by with occupants with no seatbelts on. One guy they had pulled over before us...took his ticket and drove away STILL NOT WEARING HIS SEAT BELT. Seriously?

As I know the question will follow: Yes, we had them on. Randy was driving- he had his on but the shoulder strap tucked behind him as he's sunburnt on both shoulders from working outside. I had mine on as we started out from our parking spot into the line of traffic to get on the main road, but I wear a cross-body purse and unbuckled my seat belt to get to my purse/wallet and was refastening it as we rolled to our turn to turn onto the main road- and that's when the officers waved us to pull over. We were still in the private property of the shopping center, and not on the road yet. TWO tickets.

Kinda felt like they did it because we're white...to tell you the truth.

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Topic starter Posted : August 6, 2014 11:18 pm
CruzanIron
(@cruzaniron)
Expert

Yes, it is normal. There is a difference between PROPERLY wearing a seat belt (in the way that it saves your life) and improper wearing of a seat belt, which is illegal. But I'm sure that you already knew that.

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Posted : August 6, 2014 11:26 pm
RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

....so how much is the ticket? Can't read anything she wrote on the copy we got...and supposedly we have to go to superior court to find out what our ticket is, how much it is? Doesn't that wind up meaning it will be however much the person decides that day....good mood or bad mood based? Most states it's a set fine for an infraction....

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Topic starter Posted : August 6, 2014 11:44 pm
TheSandlers
(@TheSandlers)
Advanced Member

No Safety Belts/Safety Seat $100.00

http://www.visuperiorcourt.org/clerk/TrafficFines.aspx

I have a hard time believing that the cops would have pulled over the truck full of kids I saw earlier today. There must have been at least six in the back of a truck. No seat belts. No roof. Nothing. I see the Jeep rentals with no seat belts all the time too.

We got a parking in handicap parking ticket when we first moved here. On the court date nothing was there for us and we didn't pay a penny to anyone. I hope that happens to you!

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Posted : August 6, 2014 11:56 pm
rmb2830
(@rmb2830)
Advanced Member

the cops also post on corners, like at Church and Company sts in C'sted, to ticket anyone they can, as they come around the corner. They stand there with the ticket book in their hand, no secret about what they are doing. I've only seen it done there in the AM, when all the east-end folk are on their way to work. No idea what they are doing now that the bypass exists though, as I'm sure it eliminated a lot of their potential victims who no longer drive through town.

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Posted : August 6, 2014 11:56 pm
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Expert

so basically you were not wearing your seatbelts. yes it is proper. the police offices might be told to only stop every 5th car or only blue cars.... you get the idea. it does not really matter what others do because you are only responsible for what you do.

sorry you got busted

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Posted : August 7, 2014 12:18 am
OldTart
(@the-oldtart)
Expert

I suggest you check on the laws concerning seat belts on private property as opposed to public roads. If you hadn't yet exited the parking lot and were on privately owned property the law may not apply and in this case I would strongly urge you to attend court and dispute the ticket. Many of these cases are dismissed out of hand when the police officer doesn't show up to testify. The assumption is that you're too busy to spend half a day in court and so will just pay the ticket with no muss and no fuss ..

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Posted : August 7, 2014 1:01 am
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Trusted Member

Totally agree with OT. I know for a fact they can't do that on PP stateside but not sure the "law" here. I think in a parking lot that's pretty shady.

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Posted : August 7, 2014 1:25 am
Exit Zero
(@exit-zero)
Trusted Member Registered

Here is the Superior Court traffic fine page - some of them are hilarious to any long time resident [ failure to signal cracked me up] - and if the VIPD ever had the personnel, time and energy to apply them impartially it would probably erase the Territorial Debt crisis.

It is not a 'scam' to enforce the law and I would go to Court and see how things work out, certainly better than having unpaid violations if you are stopped again or registering the car.
1st time seatbelt is $100 driver and $75 passenger.

http://www.visuperiorcourt.org/clerk/trafficfines.aspx

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Posted : August 7, 2014 3:30 am
malibutexan07
(@malibutexan07)
Advanced Member

it does not really matter what others do because you are only responsible for what you do.

Agree 100%. Other people breaking the law is irrelevant. But being ticketed on personal property is relevant (unless the owner of the property gave the police permission).

The moral of the story: be safe ladies and gents, no matter how silly the situation sounds in your mind.

I would hate to see any of you on the news as an unfortunate accident where you were taking a split second to fix or re-secure your seatbelt when, out of nowhere, someone wasn't paying attention and hit you and you were seriously injured or killed.

I enjoy all of your posts and would like to keep it that way. =)

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Posted : August 7, 2014 4:22 am
malibutexan07
(@malibutexan07)
Advanced Member

P.S. - if you were ticketed because the driver wasn't wearing his seatbelt properly, and you admitted you didn't have your seatbelt on, even if for a brief moment, then the VIPD isn't necessarily engaged in a seatbelt scam as the title of this post suggests. eek.

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Posted : August 7, 2014 4:23 am
Ronnie
(@ronnie)
Trusted Member

Two things you can be assured they love to ticket for, no seat belts and not registering your car on time. The are like hawks looking for those violations. Somehow they don't see the serious moving violations like running a red light or stop sign!

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Posted : August 7, 2014 11:28 am
Rowdy802
(@Rowdy802)
Trusted Member

That is no scam... If you remove the belt while the vehicle is in motion, you break the law.. The driver has to pull over to a safe spot, come to a complete stop, then you can unbelt...
When you take the shoulder section and put in behind you, the seatbelt is useless, hence, you break the law... the same applies if you seat over the waist section...

A shopping mall is a private property but is a public place... All vehicle laws apply and the police has jurisdiction... The public place is required to have road signs...

That being said, it is ridiculous that riding in the back of a pick-up truck is allowed in the VIs.. I specially cringe when I see kids back there... It is certain death... same applies with dogs... I will never ever forget the person that died in STX on the Melvin Evans Hwy while riding on the back of a pick-up truck. They were transporting a mattress and the person in the back was there to hold in place.. The wind eventually got it airborne with the man still trying to hold on to it... He died instantly... All because it is allowed, being lazy, and not wanting to use a rope...

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Posted : August 7, 2014 11:34 am
Stxer1
(@Stxer1)
Advanced Member

Somehow they don't see the serious moving violations like running a red light or stop sign!

Or murders.

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Posted : August 7, 2014 11:36 am
East Ender
(@east-ender)
Expert

If all the infractions in the link Exit Zero provided were actually enforced, the government could balance the budget in a week. Failure to restrain children under 5, improper lights and plates, no bumper, no fender, etc. I see probably 25 of these just on the way to work! And that is just safaris! But they concentrate on cell phone, seat belts and inspection sticker.

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Posted : August 7, 2014 11:52 am
Ca. Dreamers
(@ca-dreamers)
Advanced Member

If all the infractions in the link Exit Zero provided were actually enforced, the government could balance the budget in a week. Failure to restrain children under 5, improper lights and plates, no bumper, no fender, etc. I see probably 25 of these just on the way to work! And that is just safaris! But they concentrate on cell phone, seat belts and inspection sticker.

Cell phones? Really?

I see more people driving on this island, including the cops, texting and talking on their phones than any place I've ever been.

CD

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Posted : August 7, 2014 12:11 pm
sunshinefun
(@sunshinefun)
Trusted Member

I've had a few tickets over the years but never bothered to pay them. I've never had an issue registering my vehicle(s) or whatever as a result of not paying them either. Its just like the JFL Hospital...somehow they just haven't figured out how to collect outstanding payments, which is not my problem. If they'd ask, I might pay.

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Posted : August 7, 2014 12:16 pm
SkysTheLimit
(@SkysTheLimit)
Trusted Member

I was ticketed for no seatbelt about 10 years ago. Went down to pay the ticket twice. They refused to let me pay, saying "The officer didn't turn in the ticket".

Maybe you'll get lucky and the ticket is on his floorboard instead of being "turned in".

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Posted : August 7, 2014 1:09 pm
OldTart
(@the-oldtart)
Expert

Cell phones? Really?

I see more people driving on this island, including the cops, texting and talking on their phones than any place I've ever been.

CD

The laws on police officers using cellphones while driving varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and, in many states, police officers are exempt. Here's an interesting and informative article on the subject written by a stateside officer:

http://www.policemag.com/channel/technology/articles/2014/03/cell-phones-on-duty.aspx

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Posted : August 7, 2014 2:01 pm
C_Ray6
(@C_Ray6)
Advanced Member

Great article OT

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Posted : August 7, 2014 4:26 pm
Dante
(@dante)
Advanced Member

Yes, thanks OT very interesting.

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Posted : August 7, 2014 4:41 pm
LiquidFluoride
(@LiquidFluoride)
Trusted Member

Ive been driving around for a month with no license plate (it fell off or something I guess) with no issues.

this place cracks me up, I enjoy it more every day 🙂

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Posted : August 7, 2014 7:47 pm
OldTart
(@the-oldtart)
Expert

Ive been driving around for a month with no license plate (it fell off or something I guess) with no issues.

Just as well you're not on STT as VIPD Officer Chinnery lurks around just waiting to pounce on this sort of thing and if you even dare to look at him sideways as he's cursing you out he'll have you in handcuffs in a heartbeat. Such a sweet little man he is!

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Posted : August 7, 2014 8:19 pm
Alana33
(@alana33)
Expert

Why not just obey the laws and pay your fines if caught?
Silly concept, I know.

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Posted : August 7, 2014 8:23 pm
LiquidFluoride
(@LiquidFluoride)
Trusted Member

Why not just obey the laws and pay your fines if caught?
Silly concept, I know.

why have silly laws?

Why attempt to curtail human choice?

Are you not an adult, can you not choose to use or not to use your seat belt?

How well do you think this law is working? it certainly hasn't made people who wouldn't normally wear their seat belt do anything differently has it? it clearly has impacted some people who were innocent of this heinous crime, yet still joined the ranks of "the ticketed".

its 2014, can we all agree that most people are good, and laws, for a good portion, do nothing to change their behavior, police are there mostly for show and sometimes less than that.

Can we agree that adults are able to make decisions for themselves, even when it comes to their own life and the level of risk they are comfortable taking?

or are we still of a mind set that people are too stupid and need to be protected from themselves?

there is a "criminal element" out there, but the vast majority of us aren't a part of it. If I don't wear my seat belt it doesn't mean I deserve punishment; how did we even get to the point that laws like that are ok?

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Posted : August 7, 2014 10:03 pm
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