Police Harassment!

So I think “harassment” (as in getting harassed, not as in doing it) is my middle name right now, sheesh… I was driving down the street with Nefarious with a cop car following me. After about a block and a half it lit up and pulled me over. I hadn’t done anything wrong, so of course the first thing I asked her was, “can I ask why you pulled me over?”

For those who’ve forgotten, this is my truck:

“You don’t have mudflaps,” she tells me. Now, I have a second, much larger truck and I do know the laws regarding mudflaps. First of all, this truck isn’t that large or that lifted — 33″ tires on a 5″ lift — and I have aftermarket wide fender flares so the tires are 100% covered. There’s no excess space between the tires and the body, and the fenders are trimmed only enough to keep the tires from rubbing. The actual law as to how much coverage is required is somewhat discretionary, but to actually give you a ticket they’re supposed to see a problem occurring (ie. debris flying, serious splashing, and so on) — so it shouldn’t happen on a sunny, rainfree summer day like today.

I explain all of this to her, but it turns out that she’s the type of cop that when they discover they’re wrong, fight even harder to find something to charge you with. So instead of just letting me on my way, she asks for my license, registration, and proof of insurance. I grab the first two, and then I’m rummaging through my wallet for the last when I pull out the insurance paper for my other car. She asks me if that’s it, and I tell her no, it’s for my other car but it’s the same policy. She tells me that’s fine and takes it, with no request for the one for the truck.

For fifteen minutes I watch her reading the rule book and making calls — it’s clear she doesn’t actually know the law. She comes back a couple of times to measure my tires and various bits of the truck. I get out and ask her if the rules specify an exact distance, and exactly where she wanted the mudflap to be — she couldn’t give me an answer, and just said that it was “at her discretion” but refused to give any specifics. I told her that to give me a ticket, she had to have a reason or a legitimate concern, and that in the time we’d been standing there, a dozen other trucks with more lift and larger tires had driven past. She told me that she was sick of talking to me and wasn’t interested in discussing it anywhere other than in the presence of a judge.

So then she delays another five minutes or so as she writes up the paperwork, and comes back not with one ticket but with two. The first was for “no mud flaps”, and the second was for “refused to give insurance card”… When I saw that, I objected, and told her that she’d told me what I had given her was fine, and that I had the insurance paperwork for the truck with me and was perfectly happy to show it to her, but again, she just said to take it up with a judge.

Really, it’s this kind of police officer that earns the name “pig”.

Here’s a shot of my rear tire/fender from above. As you can see the tire is completely covered. The tickets — both of them — are completely bullshit, nothing but police harassment, and will get tossed out in court if not before (as they’re a total waste of time and money for the courts)… but still, a complete waste of my time and money as well.

In more pleasant news, while Nefarious has chickenpox, she’s got my immune system so it’s barely affected her and we’ve had tons of fun playing as usual. Thankfully she did not inherit my light sleeping, having grown up in the city — she slept through a Chinese family reunion last night that made me want to murder my neighbors… Anyway, I had to go downtown with her today for imaging on my leg as there’s some worries that my tumor is recurring, so we got to play on the big artificial rocks on Cumberland, and then we’ve been having a big squirt gun war in the driveway and on the balconies. Summer fun!

The other good news is that I got my power supply for my laptop back, so I’ll be able to get my various sites that had the plug pulled on them back online soon, as well as post all the new things that look like ducks, and capture and post the movie I made in highschool, something I’ve meant to do for, oh, a decade. It’s embarrassing, but nice memories.

17 Comments

  1. Ian Muller wrote:

    Yay getting harassed for no reason.
    I’ve never actually had to deal with that myself but many of my friends have, and I hear it’s pretty annoying, especially since you have to go through the hassle of “fighting” the ticket, when you know it’s going to get thrown out less than 5 minutes after it gets in front of a judge…

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 12:51 pm | Permalink
  2. Jes S wrote:

    That story reminds me of when I got pulled over for a cracked windscreen but ended up having to convince the cop I wasn’t “high” because of my hemp wallet that I pulled my drivers license from. I think his exact words were, “What’s the deal with the hemp wallet?” Maybe he thought I was getting a buzz through ass cheek osmosis…

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 1:08 pm | Permalink
  3. MissSio wrote:

    Pigs are pigs regardless of borders apparently. Fight that crap.

    That picture of Nefarious is awesome. The magic of childhood…

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 1:15 pm | Permalink
  4. Phantazm wrote:

    Too bad you can bill the court for your time if the ticket is thrown out! :P

    And heck ya, that pic of Nefarious is really cool! Hope she gets to feeling better soon!

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 1:45 pm | Permalink
  5. Crystal wrote:

    Oh, you’re not supposed to argue with them!

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 2:15 pm | Permalink
  6. Mel wrote:

    i saw a tree that looked like a duck once. it really did, it was awesome.

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 3:20 pm | Permalink
  7. Will wrote:

    File a complaint! I don’t know what it’s like in Toronto, but down here in the States, a lot of officers get promotions, advancements, transfers based on few or minimal complaints. In other words, if you don’t complain, the officer will not receive the necessary incentives to improve their conduct/behavior. Also, be sure to follow up on the complaint with both a request for status and a notation that the tickets were dismissed.
    A good officer will admit they made a mistake, either let you go unhindered, or worst case, issue a warning. If you are comfortable with it, asking for an apology from both the officer and their superior is not unreasonable.

    If at some point there is a question as to whether an officer is wrong/lying, it is far more credible if you can point to an officer’s record and note that they have been mistaken in the past.

    Never argue with an officer. Also, if you can record what’s happening (audio and/or video), do so.

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 4:05 pm | Permalink
  8. estrojenn wrote:

    i got pulled over on my motorcycle a while back for absolutely no reason. they basically said they pulled me over just to see if i had a license and insurance. which i did. and then the cop said “congratulations”. and i said “what for…having insurance?”. and he said “no. for having a motorcycle license. they are hard to get. and you’re a girl”.

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 4:56 pm | Permalink
  9. Ryan wrote:

    Guh, bad cops. That story reminds me of the time I was pulled over in a car I had bought THAT DAY — from a dealer, with a temp tag in the window — and ended up getting a ticket for no proof of insurance. Of course, I had called my insurance company and gotten coverage hours before, but there was no way I’d have a card on me. He also wrote me one for something like improper license because he thought that the “out of state” temp tag was somehow “bullshit” (his word). No proof of insurance is an automatic court date, of course…so that wasted an entire day just to get it thrown out. I guess I expressed my opinion a bit TOO much in court, however. It all ended with the judge telling me I’d best shut up and leave while I was still ahead :)

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 5:27 pm | Permalink
  10. cirrin wrote:

    That’s bullshit. That sucks.

    Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 5:33 pm | Permalink
  11. Simon wrote:

    That bites man. But I am excited to see your movie!

    Wednesday, May 28, 2008 at 3:24 am | Permalink
  12. Laura wrote:

    There is something about female cops being WAY more pushier and bitchy then male cops. I’d rather deal with a male cop then a female cop any day.

    Wednesday, May 28, 2008 at 6:42 am | Permalink
  13. God I wish we lived closer: I am dying to get chicken pox for Bob!

    Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 7:43 am | Permalink
  14. House Frau wrote:

    Ugh. Totally a cop harrassing you because of your truck’s appearance as well as yours. I had no idea there were mudflap laws, I wonder if there are any in the US.

    As for Ari’s chickenpox, was she vaccinated for it? I have to get my kids vaccinated to get them into public school in the US. I was wondering if the vaccine actually works, or some people still get the pox. Thanks.

    Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 8:14 am | Permalink
  15. Shannon wrote:

    The chicken pox vaccine is potentially an epidemic waiting to happen… There are worries that there is going to be a major outbreak of adult chicken pox because of it (which actually is dangerous).

    Chickenpox for a kid is pretty harmless — the only deaths associated are secondary, due to infections from picking at them and so on.

    Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 8:20 am | Permalink
  16. dreya wrote:

    Something that is good to know is that the pox vaccine or any other vaccine is not required in the states to attend public school. They will tell you it is, it’s a lie. The best fastest way with the least discussion involves informing the school that you have declined for religious reasons.

    Saturday, May 31, 2008 at 12:03 am | Permalink
  17. SpeakingOfGreg wrote:

    Good luck with the court date and shizz!

    Sunday, June 1, 2008 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

One Trackback/Pingback

  1. Shannon Larratt is Zentastic › Further Police Harassment on Saturday, March 14, 2009 at 1:01 pm

    […] combination of matte black, big mudding tires, and a winged skull on the door — and has on too many occasions opened me up for police harassment, the sort that makes you start using the word “pig” […]

Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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