Got a ticket? Tips to fight it like a lawyer

(WMC-TV) – Memphis police sit perched throughout town, clocking your speed each and every day.

So what do you do when you get a ticket?

Experts say, if it is your first offense – pay it and move on.

If you really do not think your actions deserved a ticket or if you are worried about your record or insurance costs, experts say to fight it like a lawyer.

Sometimes nothing is worse than seeing blue lights in your rearview mirror. Memphis police say they have heard it all from speeders trying to get around getting a ticket.

"Usually you tell the officer you didn't know how fast you were going," said driver Michael McDonald.

"My sister is in labor and I'm rushing to get back to Memphis," said driver Kiara Jones.

Memphis Police Lieutenant M.A. Worthy has heard every excuse in the book, "I'm late for work. I'm on the way, my wife is having a baby. Women say my sister is having a baby. I have to use the restroom real bad."

Someone told Action News 5's Janice Broach that they used a "get out of jail free" card from the game Monopoly. She asked a police officer what he thought. Once he quit laughing, he said that you never know, it might work.

Here is something that will not work:

"I've had women where they've undone buttons, readjusted and flipped their hair. Some have pulled up their skirts to show more leg," explained Lt. Worthy.

That can turn a traffic stop into something else altogether. You could land in jail.

Attorney Leslie Ballin said the easiest way out is to tell the truth.

"The one thing to say to get out of a speeding ticket is mea culpa. I did it, I'm sorry," said Ballin.

If 'sorry' doesn't cut it and you do end up with a ticket you feel that you do not deserve, experts say to fight it like an attorney.

"Set it for a hearing to see if the officer who wrote the ticket shows up," said Attorney Art Horne.

You can take it a step further and try to delay the hearing.

Insiders say the more time between your ticket and the court date, the better chance you have of getting it dismissed.

Make sure to remember every detail of the traffic stop.

"Remember all the facts, if you have witnesses, bring the witnesses," advised Ballin.

And use the radar gun.

"Request a record that relates to the calibration in the device and the maintenance records of the device."

Use a great excuse.

Attorneys said that judges can be sympathetic.

Or, you can hire an attorney who will show up in court for you.

If you do not have cash for attorneys, Leslie Ballin and Art Horne both have the same advice.

Head down to 201 Poplar, stand in line, and odds are you could get your ticket dismissed. You may have to pay court costs but that is a small price to pay to keep that ticket off of your record and your insurance premiums from going up.

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