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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 111468
Experience:  Attorney with over 24 years of law and traffic law
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Ticket says excessive use of horn, letter reminder of court

Customer Question

ticket says excessive use of horn, letter reminder of court date says unnecessary noise by sounding of horn
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: i was exiting a resturant parking lot and police car entered puling someone over and blocked me in the scene when there was enough space to allow me to exit. I beeped my horn since I felt I was blocked from being able to leave the scene
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Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 8 months ago.

Hello,

What question do you have about your circumstances?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I wanted to fight the ticket based on a) it wasnt excessive use of the horn as stated on the ticket but now that has changed to "unnecessary noise by sounding horn", plus
b) TEX TN. CODE ANN. § 546.005 : Texas Statutes - Section 546.005: DUTY OF CARE - See more at: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/txstatutes/TN/7/C/546/A/546.005#sthash.ufdBG4lU.dpuf
This chapter does not relieve the operator of an authorized emergency vehicle from:
(1) the duty to operate the vehicle with appropriate regard for the safety of all persons; or
(2) the consequences of reckless disregard for the safety of others.
- See more at: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/txstatutes/TN/7/C/546/A/546.005#sthash.ufdBG4lU.dpuf
Since they have changed the offence I am not so sure I can win it on B) alone what do you think?
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
It happened on private property, a restaurant's parking lot. he block traffic from exiting when there was plenty of room not to. This could be a case of an officer flexing his ego
Expert:  socrateaser replied 8 months ago.

I'm going to reopen your question for a Texas lawyer to assist you.

Best wishes.

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 8 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
While it may have been an "officer flexing his ego" as you are stating, the fact is that if he was performing a traffic stop, he had a right to do as he did and you would have to either back up and go a different way or wait for him to perform his duty. Traffic stops can be dangerous for the officer and him diverting his attention from the vehicle he pulled over to worry about someone being able to get in and out of the parking lot is not found to be reasonable by the courts. Texas Code 547.501 states in pertinent part, "(c) A motor vehicle operator shall use a horn to provide audible warning only when necessary to insure safe operation." Being blocked from leaving the parking lot is not "necessary to insure safe operation," as it was not unsafe for you to wait or go out another way.
This being said, most times the prosecutor will dismiss these citations if you plead not guilty and go to them with an explanation as to why you blew the horn at the officer who was doing his job. Most times, unless you really angered the officer, the officer will not even show up in court, which is grounds to seek a dismissal.

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