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Old 09-18-2014, 10:58 PM   #1
silverfudge
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HPD Ticket Scandal..... a bunch of tickets are being dismissed

Thought this might be interesting to anyone with a ticket at the moment

http://www.khou.com/story/news/inves...ndal/15802377/

Quote:
HOUSTON -- City of Houston prosecutors are dismissing hundreds of speeding tickets written by four Houston Police officers accused in a ticket-rigging scheme first uncovered by the I-Team.

"It is in the interest of justice and simply the right thing to do," said Randy Zamora, Chief of the Criminal Law Division for the City of Houston Legal Department.

An I-Team analysis of months of tickets and GPS records revealed how Officers Rudolph Farias John Garcia, Robert Manzanales and Gregory Rosa, listed each other as "witnesses" on speeding violations when they were never there. Instead, records show those officers were writing tickets at the same time at completely different locations, sometimes miles away. The motivation in the alleged scheme was to appear in court more often and collect more overtime.

"They lack all credibility and there's really not anything the state can do to rehabilitate that," said veteran traffic attorney Paul Kubosh.

Officer Farias killed himself in a police parking garage after the scandal broke, and the three other officers remain under an HPD administrative and criminal investigation. Ray Hunt, President of the Houston Police Officers' Union, said they remain innocent until proven guilty.

"The City Attorney has the prerogative to dismiss any ticket which is a class-c misdemeanor, just as any officer has the prerogative to write a citizen a warning for a ticket," Hunt said.

Prosecutor Zamora said citizens who have tickets by one of the four officers still must appear on their regularly scheduled court date to have the case dismissed. If motorists already pleaded guilty, the law allows them to fill out a motion for a new trial. They can find the form on the City of Houston Municipal Court website, and must submit it in person at the municipal courthouse, located at 1400 Lubbock, room G-48.

Zamora said if cases have been disposed of more than ten days ago, they are not afforded a new trial under Texas Government Code.

Since the first of the year, records show the four officers wrote more than 5,000 combined, with fines and fees totaling more than $350,000.

It's unclear how many of tickets written by the four officers are still open cases, but Kubosh said one thing is clear.

"We're talking a whole lot of money, we're talking a whole lot of money and it's a shame but it's just the result of people lying on traffic tickets trying to defraud the system," Kubosh said.
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Old 09-18-2014, 11:20 PM   #2
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"Zamora said if cases have been disposed of more than ten days ago, they are not afforded a new trial under Texas Government Code"

I think this means tickets handled past 10 days ago are done with. No going back. We cant appeal. We are stuck with it. We are s.o.l.
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Old 09-19-2014, 05:27 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by iDazzle View Post
"Zamora said if cases have been disposed of more than ten days ago, they are not afforded a new trial under Texas Government Code"

I think this means tickets handled past 10 days ago are done with. No going back. We cant appeal. We are stuck with it. We are s.o.l.
That's exactly what it means. The law doesn't allow an appeal if more than 10 days have passed since the issue was decided.
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Old 09-19-2014, 05:45 AM   #4
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Not suprising, glad they got caught at least
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:40 AM   #5
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I got an unrelated ticket from a different officer. Maybe I can still get off. Lol
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:41 AM   #6
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That's exactly what it means. The law doesn't allow an appeal if more than 10 days have passed since the issue was decided.
Understandable as we wouldn't want people appealing really old tickets just to tie up the system but it does suck that you can't when the govt was the one in the wrong.
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:43 AM   #7
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Understandable as we wouldn't want people appealing really old tickets just to tie up the system but it does suck that you can't when the govt was the one in the wrong.
You only get to eat the apple one time
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:00 AM   #8
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the officer commited suicide after the scandal broke? thats tough, r.i.p. but what they were doing wasnt right thats for sure.
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:19 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bevo View Post
That's exactly what it means. The law doesn't allow an appeal if more than 10 days have passed since the issue was decided.
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonHD View Post
Understandable as we wouldn't want people appealing really old tickets just to tie up the system but it does suck that you can't when the govt was the one in the wrong.

This really sucks bc its still Stealing from the innocent.
10 days is too short and its on the city for not having a better system, checking to see if their officers are in line and legit.

in other parts of law, we have statute of limitations..usually a couple years to file. 10 days is way too short. 90 days, 365 days seem more acceptable.
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:55 AM   #10
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:02 AM   #11
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Hard to believe he committed suicide over some forged tickets. Makes me wonder if there is more to the story, what else was he up to?
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:10 AM   #12
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Seems like there were 4 bad apples.
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:18 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WbDDoT View Post
Hard to believe he committed suicide over some forged tickets. Makes me wonder if there is more to the story, what else was he up to?
I wonder that as well. As much as I find the ticket rigging deplorable and think they deserve to be punished... death by his own gun is a bit extreme.

Sad indeed.
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:28 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iDazzle View Post
This really sucks bc its still Stealing from the innocent.
10 days is too short and its on the city for not having a better system, checking to see if their officers are in line and legit.

in other parts of law, we have statute of limitations..usually a couple years to file. 10 days is way too short. 90 days, 365 days seem more acceptable.
It's 10 days from the time you disposed of it in court, or you pleaded guilty and and paid by mail. If you were in court you, already had the opportunity to dispute it. What if the court found in your favor? You wouldn't like the prosecutor to come after you again because he didn't agree with the judge or jury. It works both ways.
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:29 AM   #15
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Quote:
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Hard to believe he committed suicide over some forged tickets. Makes me wonder if there is more to the story, what else was he up to?
He was a traffic cop
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:47 AM   #16
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the officer commited suicide after the scandal broke? thats tough, r.i.p. but what they were doing wasnt right thats for sure.
Agree. But you'll never know what was going on inside their head prior to a suicide. I've been told that many suicides are actually spur of the moment so maybe the pressure/embarrassment got to him and it seemed bigger than it was.

OR....maybe there's a lot more to the story than what is published in the news. (imagine that)
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:48 AM   #17
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He was a traffic cop
elaborate please. meaning...
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Old 09-19-2014, 10:13 AM   #18
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elaborate please. meaning...
Have you googled and read the original story about his suicide?
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Old 09-19-2014, 11:26 AM   #19
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Have you googled and read the original story about his suicide?
Post a link...
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Old 09-19-2014, 11:41 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iDazzle View Post
This really sucks bc its still Stealing from the innocent.
10 days is too short and its on the city for not having a better system, checking to see if their officers are in line and legit.

in other parts of law, we have statute of limitations..usually a couple years to file. 10 days is way too short. 90 days, 365 days seem more acceptable.
The 10 days refers to any tickets that were already handled in court prior to this judgement. It doesn't mean you have 10 days to take care of it now.
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