General Question

mirifique's avatar

Does the San Francisco MTA have the right to ticket you twice for the same offense within 10 minutes?

Asked by mirifique (1537points) May 7th, 2012

Received 2 tickets for not turning my wheels on an incline within 10 minutes. This was ONE offense but received 2 tickets. Per 7.2.35 (below) there is no time-clock on the below violation. However, I can’t find any administrative code provision (aside from the double jeopardy crim law principle) which would preclude the MTA from making multiple citations for the same offense. Can anyone help find a statute/reg/provision which would disallow them from doing this so I can include such in my protest letter?


To Park a vehicle upon any grade or slope exceeding three percent without effectively setting the brakes and blocking the wheels of the vehicle by turning them against the curb or by other means. For the purpose of the issuance of a notice of violation of this Section, proof that an unattended vehicle Parked on a grade exceeding three percent was involved in a collision shall establish a presumption that such unattended vehicle was Parked in violation of this Section. (58(a))

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23 Answers

softtop67's avatar

they have the right to ticket you for whatever they wish. Just like you have the right to go to court and get it thrown out

JLeslie's avatar

Did you move your car? Or, it was ticketed twice in the same spot? I’m confused.

mirifique's avatar

@JLeslie No, the car was NOT moved. Ticketed twice in the same spot.

gambitking's avatar

Seems like an unfair rap, you can probably get one of them dismissed. Parking violations usually can add up on the same car, so it’s not like getting a ticket for a broken tail light twice on the same drive home, but still should be contestable

john65pennington's avatar

I issued a driver two citations, for the same offense, in two hours.

His auto’s registration plate had expired three months earlier. After the first citation was issued, I advised the driver to take his vehicle home and park it, until he had the money to purchase a current license plate. Instead of following my orders, I spotted this same vehicle at Wendy’s Restaurant, waiting in the drive up line to place an order. I waited until the driver was on the public street and issued a second citation.

Yes, you can be issued two citations, for the same offense, within one or two hours. It’s not double jeapordy, since the dates are the same, but the times are different and especially, if the officer has given you a direct order.

mirifique's avatar

Can anyone think of an admin law principle/case precluding a double citation for a single violation?

mirifique's avatar

@john65pennington Yes, but in this case, the citations were 10 minutes apart. If this is legally valid, then what is to stop a ticket agent from processing one ticket every minute for 24 hours, or longer? Wouldn’t there be some kind of time bar from issuing a repeat citation in this instance (say, every 24 hours)?

JLeslie's avatar

@mirifique So you removed the ticket and did not fix the wheels?

mirifique's avatar

@JLeslie I received both tickets a day later.

lillycoyote's avatar

I couldn’t find anything about two tickets in ten minutes but maybe this will work. It’ll just take you a couple of minutes to find out if you can contest the ticket this way.

It’s all I’ve got. :-)

JLeslie's avatar

@mirifique Wait wait. You received two tickets 10 minutes apart right? I don’t know what the day later has to do with anything? Do you mean you were parked there a day, and then received two tecks the next day 10 minutes apart? Did you remove the first ticket and not fix your wheels?

WestRiverrat's avatar

If you take both tickets to traffic court, you probably will get at least one of them dismissed.

mirifique's avatar

@JLeslie – Not sure how to be more explicit about this: I simply came up to my car and found two tickets dated the day before, 10 minutes apart.

Like this:
Wednesday, 4:30 pm – Ticket 1
Wednesday, 4:40 pm – Ticket 2
Thursday, 9am – I went up to my car and found these two tickets. This was the first time I saw the tickets.

JLeslie's avatar

@mirifique Ok. Yeah, sorry I was so dense I guess. Seems like you should be able to get at least one dismissed, I agree with @WestRiverrat.

mirifique's avatar

@JLeslie OK – but under what theory of law or regulation?

WestRiverrat's avatar

@mirifique The meter maid had to fill her/his quota.

JLeslie's avatar

@mirifique I don’t know. Looks like people have provided some links above. I agree if you go into court better to be prepared with a law on your side, but I think the judge will likely dismiss one just for common sense reasons.

mirifique's avatar

The links above don’t answer my question…

JLeslie's avatar

@mirifique Were they issued by the same parking person? I would call if there is a number on the ticket and ask a few questions, see if you cam get some info that will help you. That totally sucks. I would be pissed off.

LostInParadise's avatar

It is an interesting general question. For a non-moving violation, how much time has to elapse between tickets? I agree that 10 minutes is unreasonable, but what is reasonable? Suppose a person leaves a car illegally parked for several days. How many tickets should the person get? One per day? You would think that there would be some general consensus on this.

lillycoyote's avatar

I just got off the phone with a San Francisco MTA customer service rep and he said that two tickets in ten minutes didn’t sound right either. What he said to do would be to photocopy the tickets, pay one of them and then follow the procedure for contesting tickets, explain what happened and enclose copies of the both tickets.

If you want legal advice or case law citations I suggest you consult an local attorney.

bewailknot's avatar

I know where I live (elsewhere in California) you can be repeatedly ticketed for the same offence pretty much every minute (even by the same officer). I had 2 friends this happened to – 1 called the Chief of Police, fussed a bit and only had to pay the first ticket; 2 went to traffic court with the tickets and the judge only had him pay the first ticket, removing the rest.

john65pennington's avatar

I wrote this driver almost back to back citations, because he failed to do what I told him to do. If he had driven his car home and parked it, he would not have received a 2nd citation.

I almost towed his vehicle on the second citation. The law says I have a choice to make this decision.

I decided to give him a second chance. I followed him home to make sure, this time.

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