Getting pulled for speeding in Missouri (or anywhere!) can be a stressful experience, so much so that most people like to avoid thinking about it as much as possible. However, knowing the basics will make you feel much more prepared to handle the real thing, should you ever find yourself in that situation. Here are some pointers:
If you see a police officer flashing their lights behind you, pull over as soon as it is safe to do so. Missouri Law Section 304.022 RSMo. requires a motorist to pull as far as possible to the right of the traveled portion of the highway and stop when a police car approaches displaying emergency lights. When you see a police car approaching, take a deep breath and begin making your way to the right shoulder of the road, or an appropriate stopping point.
If it is dark out, turn on the overhead light in your car so you are visible to officers.
Have your driver’s license, proof of insurance, and vehicle registration ready, open your window part way, and place your hands on the steering wheel. Retrieve these things as quickly as possible and aim to have your hands on the wheel by the time the officer begins approaching your car. Avoid reaching under the seat or into the glove compartment while the officer is approaching your car as they may think you are retrieving a weapon or hiding contraband.
It is important that you and any passengers in the car remain as calm as possible and do not make any sudden movements when police are approaching the vehicle. These movements could be misconstrued as a possible threat to the officer and unnecessarily escalate the situation.
The trooper may complete the stop without requiring you to leave your car, or they may ask you to wait in the patrol car. Court cases allow the officer discretion to determine which procedure is the safest based on the circumstances of each stop. If you are asked to step out of the vehicle, keep both of your hands in view of the officer.
What if I am Issued a Ticket?
If you are issued a ticket for speeding in Missouri, you will be asked to sign it. This is fine to do. By signing the traffic ticket, you are not admitting guilt. Your signature merely acknowledges receipt of the traffic ticket and your promise to appear in court on the given court date. If you cannot attend court on the provided date, you can contact the court prior to the court date for disposal of the case to request a different date. Refusing to sign the traffic ticket will not eliminate your obligation to appear in court. Once the trooper gives you a copy of the traffic ticket, you have been served a summons (subpoena) to appear in court. Failure to appear on your scheduled court date is a violation of law and may result in suspension of your driver’s license or additional charges being filed.
Contact a Missouri Traffic Ticket Attorney
Under Missouri’s point system, pleading guilty to a speeding ticket can add up to three points to your driving record, and the charge will remain on your record for five years. The more points you accumulate on your driving record, the higher your risk of having your license suspended if you receive an additional ticket. Additionally, the more points you have on your driving record, the more expensive (and difficult to find) car insurance becomes.
An experienced Kansas City, Missouri Speeding Ticket Lawyer can work with the Prosecutor to develop a deal that is beneficial to you. In many cases, your attorney will be able to reduce your speeding violation to a non-moving violation, so that no points or infractions are added to your driving record and your insurance rates will not be affected.
If you have received a speeding ticket in Missouri, contact Aimee the Attorney, your Kansas City Traffic Ticket Lawyer, for a free consultation. Aimee Gromowsky is a former Assistant Prosecuting Attorney for Jackson County. She has over 19 years of experience in Kansas and Missouri courts and handles thousands of cases in the Kansas City, Missouri area every year. If anyone can wipe your record clean, it is her! Contact her today.