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ASK A COP — Is speeding by 1 mph worthy of a pullover?

Gina from Beaumont asks: I’ve been wondering about speeding and only going 1 mile per hour over the speed limit. Officer Antoine, you have been the topic of discussion on this subject on many occasions at the office. Everyone says you’re the officer that will stop someone for going 1 mph over the speed limit and give them a ticket. I’m not sure if that’s true or not; can police officers actually pull someone over for going 1 mph over the speed limit?

Answer: Rumors, rumors, rumors. Yes, Gina I’ve heard many of them. Well let me start off by saying that I have NEVER issued anyone a citation for going 1 mph over the posted speed limit. With that said, I must say that ANY speed above the posted speed limit in the great state of Texas is ILLEGAL, but routinely police officers are NOT stopping vehicles that are traveling 1 mph over the posted speed limit. The most common violation motorists committed while operating a motor vehicle is speeding. We have started regarding the speed limit sign as a suggestion rather than the law! The speed limit sign is the maximum speed one can safely travel on the roadway. Safety is the name we enforce the speed limit law, and it’s not about money! We have more people die every year from vehicle crashes and speeding is one of the top three contributors. So the more we have motorists comply with the speed law in the state of Texas, we will have less death, injuries and damage property resulting from vehicle crashes!

Don from Port Arthur asks: I have noticed a problem that happens many times a day. A driver is in the right lane on FM 365, stopping at light with Howell Furniture on their right side. Some drivers stop at light, continue into intersection, then turn right on 21st Street. Some drivers don’t even stop, continue into intersection, then right on red. I feel a sign should be installed saying “No right on red.”

There should be some way to educate drivers that right on red is only after a complete stop. Then, if clear, a right may be done at most stop lights. This has to be one of the biggest mistake drivers do and cause many accidents.

Answer: Right on red only after you’ve made a complete stop at the intersection. You’re correct; this is a common violation that’s committed amongst Southeast Texas motorists. We’ve become too lax regarding many of the laws regarding operating a motor vehicle. The interesting thing about turning right on red is that the driver is actually charged with totally disregarding the red traffic signal! There is no charge in the Texas Transportation Code that says failure to completely stop and an intersection before turning right; rather it’s running a red light!

Donnie from Orange asks: I had a pretty bad slump a couple of years ago and received three moving violation tickets in one year. Today, I’m a different driver. The cities of Orange and Port Arthur aren’t getting any more money from me. I didn’t realize how costly getting caught breaking the law was. I’m not angry at the police officers, just myself for getting caught. How long do points stay on my driving record for moving violations?

Answer: That was a difficult driving year for you, especially if you were convicted on all the moving violations. Points are assessed by the state of Texas for traffic convictions. Once the conviction has been added to your record, points are assigned and remain on the driver record for three years from the date of conviction. Donnie, don’t think you’re off the hook if you get a ticket out of the state of Texas, because two points are assessed for a Texas or out-of-state traffic conviction. Contact the local municipal court where you were convicted and they can inform you of your conviction date and count forward 3 years from that date. That’s when points are scheduled to come off your driving record. So Donnie, three years is the answer you seek!

Join Officer Antoine for Ask A Cop Live, on KSAP 96.9 FM, “The Breeze” every Tuesday from 1 to 2:30p. You can also tune in at ksapthebreeze.org. Ask your question live at 409-982-0247. Email your questions to Rickey.Antoine@portarthurtx.gov, call 409-983-8673 or mail them to: Ofc. Rickey Antoine, 645 4th Street, Port Arthur, Texas, 77640. If you happen to see me in public you can Ask A Cop!