The Ten Stupidest Ways To Get A Ticket

Illustration for article titled The Ten Stupidest Ways To Get A Ticket

There are few smart ways to get in trouble with the cops, but there are definitely a few unintelligent ways to find yourself on the wrong end of the law. Here are the infractions Jalopnik readers think are the stupidest ways to get a ticket.


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10.) Running Over A Cop Car

Suggested By: Autobox

How To Do it: This happens more often than you'd think. There's a squad car behind you and, in your nervousness, you shift into reverse instead of drive. A few seconds later and voila! You've just added destruction of police property and reckless driving to your record.

9.) Talking Back To The Police

Suggested By: Teampunkass

How To Do it: You (sort of) have the right to talk back to the police, but that doesn't mean you should. Not every traffic stop ends in a ticket. Many traffic stops that start with belligerent yelling end up in a tazing. Don't say we didn't warn you.

8.) General Hoonage In Front Of The Police

Suggested By: Kiwi Commander

How To Do it: Empty parking lots and deserted backroads exist so that drivers can have a little breathing space to enjoy their cars. But see a police officer and you should probably cool things a bit unless your first name is "Bo" and your orange Charger can outrun the fuzz.


6.) Riding Outside The Vehicle

Suggested By: Meatstick62

How To Do it: We'll let Meatstick62 explain this one:

I'm going to nominate myself for this one.
A few years ago me and a friend got ticketed for "riding on the outside of a vehicle." We were driving through downtown Orlando traffic from red light to red light as part of a cruise to a meet in Tampa. I was riding in the back of a friend's Evo and taking picture of some of our fellow cruisers out of the window. We were going no more than 25-30 mph through this traffic so I decided to open the door and lay across the back seats to get a different perspective. Little did I know that an officer in an undercover Ford Explorer was right there next to us. He pulled us over in a super market parking lot and the whole cruise followed us in to watch. The cop obviously didn't know what exactly to ticket us for and he spent a good 15 minutes on the radio trying to figure it out. He eventually came back with a $90 ticket for me for "riding on the outside of a vehicle" and and a $160 ticket for the driver for allowing it.
We looked up the FL statute when we got home and found this:
"316.2015 Unlawful for person to ride on exterior of vehicle.—
(1) It is unlawful for any operator of a passenger vehicle to permit any person to ride on the bumper, radiator, fender, hood, top, trunk, or running board of such vehicle when operated upon any street or highway which is maintained by the state, county, or municipality. Any person who violates this subsection shall be cited for a moving violation, punishable as provided in chapter 318."
Now I was still in the back seat (and buckled) when we got these tickets. My friend and I decided to write a letter to the Orlando traffic court judge explaining the situation and how we felt that we did not violate the statue we where cited for violating. It work- we got a letter a few weeks later saying that our tickets were dismissed!

7.) Passing A Police Car

Suggested By: My X-type is too a real Jaguar

How To Do it: Either you're a rebel who doesn't care about authority. Or you're speeding along and not paying attention. Whatever the reason, I know a patrol officer who writes most of his tickets to people passing him up. It helps that he drives a super sleeper new silver Caprice without steelies. Extra points if you're a cop car being pulled over by another cop car.

6.) Going Too Slow

Suggested By: Buckus

How To Do it: Go super super slow. It's an embarrassing way to get a ticket.

5.) Tailgating A Cop Car

Suggested By: Pasty

How To Do it: From Pasty:

I couldn't believe it even though it happened in front of my eyes. I kept asking my girlfriend the rhetorical "What is this guy doing!?" Of course, this did happen on a stretch of I-12 that runs through the meth production capital of Louisiana.

4.) Running A Stop Sign… On A Bicyle

Suggested By: Is that a rain coat?

How To Do it: In most places, bicycles have to abide by regular traffic regulations just like cars. This means stopping for stop signs and red lights. Tempted to roll through and get caught? You'll be the weirdo on the side of the ride being pulled over the police.

3.) Masturbating In Your Car

Suggested By: Itschrome

How To Do it: Getting a ticket for having sex in your car makes you a hero. Getting a ticket for having sex with yourself? Not so much. And remember always to close the sunroof.

Illustration for article titled The Ten Stupidest Ways To Get A Ticket

2.) Illegal "Aftermarket" Taillights On A Pontiac G8

Suggested By: Altemus Prime

How To Do it: Own a Pontiac G8 in Maryland. The state has a law against illegal aftermarket taillights and, while the G8's stock lights are unique, they're not aftermarket. Eventually, a judge dismissed the case against one G8 owner, but that doesn't stop the police from giving tickets for it. You're not dumb if you get this ticket, you're dumb if you give it.


1.) Drunk Driving

Suggested By: Everyone

How To Do it: Drink and drive. It's dumb. Don't do it.

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No.4 reminds me —

I got pulled over for texting while riding my bicycle. Yeah, you can scream "unsafe" if you want, but it's a road with little traffic, a dedicated bike lane, and a 25 mph speed limit. And there's no law against texting while operating a bicycle. The law in the state clearly stated you couldn't text while operating a 'motor vehicle'.

Well, I explain this to the cop, and he gets very angry at me. Demands to see my driver's license. I didn't have it (didn't grab my wallet, because I was riding my bike to class and back, and didn't really need it).

The cop writes me a ticket for texting while riding a bicycle, and for riding a bicycle without a license. I took both tickets to court, AND THEY STUCK. I had to pay $300 for all of that.