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Fighting helmet tickets
NOTE: The first ammendment to the U.S. constituition allows the execise of "Freedom of Speech". It is protected here, as well as political opinions.
Rating: 117 user(s) have rated this article Average rating: 3.5
Posted by: ksupinger, on 11/8/2007, in category "General MMA Meeting material"
Views: this article has been read 4670 times
Abstract: Anthony gives so advice

There are 2 methods that have been pretty successful.

1.      When you go to court bring your approved helmet (not the one you got ticketed for) keep it in a cloth helmet bag. Tell the judge this is your helmet. The judge will have the option to dismiss the original citation, charge you just an administration fee (generally $10) considering the offense to be a "fix-it" ticket, or hit you with the full fine.

2.      The law requires that you had knowledge that your helmet did not comply and the officer has to be able to prove that you had that knowledge. Your defense is simply "I didn't know they could sell me an illegal helmet". In this case ignorance of the law is excusable once again probably with an administration fee.

3.     

I would suggest you not use the #1 method if your helmet has any identifiable stickers other than the DOT on it. The officer may have made notes to be able to ID the helmet he was citing.

If the officer inspected your helmet and it has anything identifying it as a "novelty" item your defense for #2 goes out the window.

If the officer did not inspect your helmet you may also question his ability to determine compliance. It is the manufacturers responsibility to certify compliance. No law enforcement agency approves any helmet only the manufacturer so if he did not inspect it how is he able to say it does not comply.

I hope this helps. Let us know the outcome if you challenge the ticket.

Anthony "8-Ball". Division Manager

Div 11 Napa / Solano


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Comment posted by Mark on Friday, January 04, 2008 1:36 AM
I would recommend using the information found at www.boltofca.com  
It is explained pretty well, and can give you quite a few options to use if you have a helmet ticket to fight.
I recommend reading up NOW so you can be really familiar with the info before you get the ticket.
BTW, you do not have to take your helmet off for the officer to inspect it, if he doesn't have a warrant to search more than what he can see which is in plain sight.   Technically, only a recall notice by the helmet manufacturer, or test results from a helmet testing laboratory proving a "failing grade" make a helmet not in compliance with the law (FMVSS 218), but the officer must write that ticket as a "fix-it" ticket in compliance with California Vehicle Code 40303.5 - if not, the cop has violated state law.  But you are right, for a ticket to be written, the cop must be able to prove you had "actual knowledge" that your helmet was not legal.  (and you aren't required to testify against yourself)

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