The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Traffic offenses deserve ticketing, campus police say

By Hoda Hassan/reporter

Lie or cry … You’re getting a traffic ticket.

For some students coming to class on time is not an easy task. Beating the traffic on the way to school is one thing, but finding a close parking spot quickly is another challenge.

Some students think it looks harmless to park in a faculty zone or to speed a little to get to class on time. When pulled over, they start to lie or beg. But does crying work, and is it okay to beg?

Sgt. Anthony Woolum, NE Campus police officer, offered safety advice and hints for avoiding traffic tickets on campus.

What if students claim ignorance of traffic rules?

“Ignorance is no excuse,” he said. “Unfortunately, most students never read the brochure we hand to them when they get their permit. More than that, they rip it up and put it in trash. “

Speeding at 30-45 mph in the school parking lot, parking in a faculty zone or parking the opposite direction on a one-way aisle can earn students an easy traffic ticket, Woolum said. Such violators threaten public safety as well as their own, so violations are a big concern to the police department.

When caught speeding, what are the most common excuses students usually use?
Woolum said most students use the common excuse of needing to use the bathroom “really fast.” Many also claim their heavy schedules of school and work leave them with very little time to rest. Woolum said some times the police will call an employer to verify the student is telling the truth about being so exhausted from work.

Does the gender make a difference in getting a ticket changed to just a warning?
“My daughter who lives in Denver got stopped with her 2-year-old child in the back seat. She did not get a ticket; she just got a warning,” he said. “I do not really know why she just got the warning, but officers do use the spirit of the law.”

Can a student protest a ticket? 
If planning to protest a traffic ticket, students should write an appeal letter to the committee, which consists of three fellow students. The committee will decide whether to keep the ticket or cancel it.

Woolum said students should not get their hopes up.

“It is really rare they cancel the ticket,” he said. “Out of 10 tickets, maybe one gets canceled. The bottom line is to be safe for your safety and for the safety of others.

What advice would you give to students?
When a student gets a permit from the police department, Woolum asks they not rip it up and throw it away.

“Read the brochure, know the rules and be safe for you and for others,” he said. “And please do not lie to a police officer. We’ve heard it all … unless you come up with a new excuse. Do not lie or cry; just follow the rules and be safe.”

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