Baltimore fare evasion ticket

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Latest post Wed, May 20 2015 1:43 PM by ca19lawyer2. 7 replies.
  • Tue, May 19 2015 7:55 PM

    • mansface
      Consumer
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    • Joined on Wed, May 20 2015
    • MD
    • Posts 2

    Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    Hello.

    I ride on the baltimore light rail today without a ticket and was caught. The police officer gave me a blue ticket with a charge of $50. I don't mind paying the fee at all since I made a mistake. But I sincerely don't want any criminal record. The police officer said that if I paid the fine then this will go on my criminal record so he suggested me to go to trail.

    I'm an internation student who just graduated yeaterday and I don't want this record to affect further employment or us visa opportunity.

     

    What would be the best thing to do in this case? Thank you very much.

  • Tue, May 19 2015 10:22 PM In reply to

    Re: Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    mansface:
    What would be the best thing to do in this case?

    Consult a local attorney.  BTW, if you didn't want to risk the consequences, you shouldn't have rode without a ticket in the first place.

  • Wed, May 20 2015 8:41 AM In reply to

    Re: Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    Do you have any basis to defend against the ticket?  If not, I can't really imagine why you'd actually force a trial in a matter like this.  As far as a "criminal record," I can scarcely imagine anyone caring about a trivial matter such as this.

  • Wed, May 20 2015 9:08 AM In reply to

    • mansface
      Consumer
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Wed, May 20 2015
    • MD
    • Posts 2

    Re: Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    Hi, thank you very much for your response.

     

    I'm in the middle of graduation week and I'm in a mess. I had to go a lot of places in a day so yesterday I bought a day pass in the morning but when I head out later that day I grabbed another bag without the day pass on me.

     

    The officer who issued me the ticket told me not to pay the fine but go to court and argue for it.

  • Wed, May 20 2015 9:18 AM In reply to

    Re: Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    mansface:
    The officer who issued me the ticket told me not to pay the fine but go to court and argue for it.

    Officers tell people that all the time to avoid people arguing with them.

    When you go to court the officer will be there to testify against you, not for you.

     

    • The right of the people 
    • to keep and bear arms,
    • shall not be infringed.
  • Wed, May 20 2015 10:23 AM In reply to

    Re: Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    mansface:

     I had to go a lot of places in a day so yesterday I bought a day pass in the morning but when I head out later that day I grabbed another bag without the day pass on me.



    So you actually did have a day pass, but just did not have it with you. That's positive.

    My suggestion to you is to find a low-cost legal clinic and ask them if they can offer you sound advice, based on local expertise. Call the local Bar Association and ask for a referral. Your main concern is the effect this ticket will have on your immigration status, so I suggest you ask for a lawyer who specializes in immigration issues.

    "Hello, Bar Association? Can you connect me to a referral service?"
    "Hello, referral service? I am an international student and recently received a ticket for riding on public transport without a ticket. Can you refer me to a low-cost clinic or local attorney who can best advise me on how to protect my immigration status and defend myself against the ticket?"

     

     

  • Wed, May 20 2015 10:24 AM In reply to

    Re: Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    Congratulations on your recent graduation. That's quite an achievement. 

  • Wed, May 20 2015 1:43 PM In reply to

    Re: Baltimore fare evasion ticket

    In my prior response, I asked, "Do you have any basis to defend against the ticket?"

    You responded with:  "I'm in the middle of graduation week and I'm in a mess. I had to go a lot of places in a day so yesterday I bought a day pass in the morning but when I head out later that day I grabbed another bag without the day pass on me."

    If this was intended as a response to my question, then I assume the real answer to my question is no.  Correct?

    In your original post, you wrote that the cop told you that, if you pay the fine, "this" will go on your "criminal record" and, for that reason, he "he suggested [that you] go to trail [sic]."

    In this regard, I think it's important that you explain what you think "criminal record" means.  In doing so, keep in mind that the police department that issued the ticket already has and will, for the foreseeable future, continue to have a "record" regarding this "criminal" matter.  Is that record a "criminal record"?  Seems to me that it is.  While I don't profess to know the process regarding matters like this in Baltimore, my assumption is that, at some point, the matter will be turned over to the local prosecutor and/or the court.  Once that happens, those entities will have "records" regarding this "criminal" matter.  Are those records "criminal records"?

    There is, of course, another layer to this.  The records maintained by the cops are generally not accessible to the general public.  Same with the local prosecutor.  However, court records not relating to juveniles and a few other classes of cases generally are open to the public, and entities exist that gather public criminal records for the purpose of providing information to those who seek such information (e.g., prospective employers).  Additionally, local law enforcement makes certain information available to national registries maintained by the federal government (e.g., the DOJ).  Parts or all of those databases may be available to the general public, and all of the things mentioned in this paragraph are, by definition, "criminal records."

    What I'm getting at is that there is no single person or entity who maintains a document called "Mansface's Criminal Record" that is the be all and end all of information about you.  I didn't bother to get into this previously because I can't conceive anyone is going to car about something like this.  Maybe others disagree, but in my opinion, this is on the same level as a speeding ticket.

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