I observed three cases, one of which was a traffic violation. The traffic violation case that I observed was for an expired car registration. The plaintiff was the state of Pennsylvania, and the officer who cited the defendant is representing the state. The defendant in this traffic violation was a younger individual who represented himself.
After the plaintiff and defendant swore into the court under oath the officer presented his evidence and details leading him to conduct the traffic stop. The officer stated that he was driving behind the defendant October 13, 2008 and noticed that the expiration sticker that was on the defendant’s vehicle was September 2008. He then had dispatch verify that the registration was in fact expired; dispatch confirmed that it was, so he then conducted the traffic stop. The officer then presented the print out from dispatch showing the dated printed and the time of the expiration, which showed it to be expired.
The defendant then had time to plead his case. He was there to ask for a lesser fine, he was not there to deny the fact that it was not expired but that he didn’t know that registration was up. He stated that his father just moved to New Mexico during the time period and didn’t receive the notice from PennDot saying that the registration for the vehicle is coming up. The judge then stated that PennDot sends out notices 3 to 4 months in advanced. The judge stated that he was clearly guilty in this type of case. So the judgment was sent in favor of the state.
I also observed another case; this case was a zoning violation. The defendant was a residence of the Indiana Borough and the plaintiff was the Indiana Borough, an official from the zoning department represented the Indiana Borough. There were at least two offenses that the defendant violated in the zoning code. The first offense was nothing having a zoning permit for a pool constructed in his yard. The defendant also failed to have any...