Well, either that or hell froze over last Thursday. . .but if that happened Channel 8 would’ve sent out a truck and reported it live, and if they did I missed it all. So, we really have no other choice but to assume that there IS a judge in Wayne County with a hefty dose of viable cerebrum. And he used it in deciding my appeal, when he said “The People [represented by a prosecutor with legs like tree trunks] failed to meet their burden so as to sufficiently support a conviction” because:
The People’s sole witness, none other than Officer Friendly himself, knew the defendant had a medical exemption from seat belt use because he had examined it not more than a year ago when he had stopped her for the same “violation,”
The Defendant had provided the trial court with proof of the exemption a full 4 months prior to trial, a fact conveniently verified by the trial court when it submitted date-stamped copies to the appeals court,
The People refuted absolutely none of the Defendant’s testimony, including but not limited to the fact that she did indeed have a lawful exemption and had had it since about 2009,
Since the appeals court judge realized, after examining all available evidence (as well as a couple of legal memoranda written by the defendant pro se) that the Defendant had fully complied with the *real* law and, since there is no way she is bound by any of the spurious rogue law invented by the trial court, the ticket is dismissed by order of the appeals court.
It is not a little disappointing to find that the appeals court judge, though fully equipped with brains, evidently missed out on his allotment of guts, which is probably why he did not acknowledge any of the shenanigans that The Less-Than-Honorable Dynamic Duo tried to pass off as “law” (such as lying about evidence, concocting some sort of ludicrous and totally illicit “height requirement,” and then meeting ex parte to discuss their strategy). However, I do take comfort in knowing that no less than THREE (3) prosecutors — well, 4 if you count the bald one whom I had the pleasure of seriously berating during an almost hour-long phone call (wherein he grudgingly admitted the fact of the ex parte meeting) — wasted their individual and collective efforts (albeit minimal) in defending this case, and they all lost to ME, a short, round, opinionated, pro se grandmother whose only prior legal knowledge came from watching Perry Mason reruns on News Channel 10 — that plus a ten-minute read of NY VTL 1229c and an innate Italian temper provided the perfect storm that brought all those high-falutin’ prosecutors down. . .
I didn’t prevail because the judge sided with me. I prevailed because he sided with the law, and I wrote a memorandum or two that proved how the law was broken rather than upheld by the trial court, whereas 3 (maybe 4) egotistical tax-supported lawyers couldn’t be bothered to waste either their brains or their time by reading my memorandums and replying in kind. Instead, they sat down the day before theirs was due and scribbled out 4 or 5 pages of self-serving, irrelevant crap that evaded the questions of law and instead begged for the mercy they truly expected to receive. But they were busted! The ten minutes they spent writing their “memorandum” was all for naught, since the Goliath created by their expensive law school training and bolstered by their impressive onsite legal library was no match for David, whose slingshot was loaded simply with NY VTL 1229c-7. In fact, not even one of the jokes “Rick” cracked with “Barry” or with the judge over lunch did any good at all. . .damn! It’s enough to make you slam the door of your luxury car (paid for by taxpayers like you and me) and mutter cuss words all the way from Lyons to your gracious home in Newark, or Fairport, or perhaps Shortsville, and maybe even yell at the dog when you get there, no?
Anyway, now the case is in OUR court, the court of public opinion, and WE get to be the judge! So, what do you think — has the Rather Dishonorable Justice I’m-Not-Telling-You-His-Name, with his 6 whole days of edjumication and 27 years of butt-sitting the judicial bench, adequately fulfilled the role of Dumb-Ass? I think you know my answer, but I’d like to know yours.
Well, if you just can’t decide until you know his name (and that of his lying, tree-trunk-legged prosecutor), I really wish I could help you, but I can’t. You see, the fine deputy sheriffs of this county have spent the past year perfecting the art of harassment, and they have only recently quit looking for my car so they can stop me on some pretense or other, even though they never find cause to write a ticket. Nor do I look forward to another personal encounter with any one of them, especially Deputy Sheriff St***n Br***s, who (IMHO) is nothing a two-bit bully who proves that you *can* get a job, even if you do graduate at the very bottom of your class. However, you can always read their names in the decision, which is now public and available to anyone who searches the judicial records of the State of New York. You can do this for free if you have a computer (hint: use the date of August 15, 2012 when searching the justice court records and July 25, 2013 if you look in the records of the Wayne County Court of Appeals), or you can ask your local librarian to help you find it.
Or, better yet, drive around a certain Wayne County lakeside town a few times without wearing your seat belt, and I am pretty sure you will meet them all in person, beginning with Officer Friendly himself, who will politely escort you to The Honorable Hall-(and-Side-Room)-of-Justice, where you will be personally introduced to His Dumb-Ass Honor, Miss Tree-Trunk Legs, and a very kind but utterly clumsy bailiff.
So, if you choose this route, do drop me a note and let me know if they have learned any lessons about NY VTL 1229c, especially subsections 5 and 7. . .but, whatever you do, decline that invitation to visit The Honorable Side Room — in fact, don’t go near it, even if the court orders you to do so!