Should I pay... or fight it? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 05:49 PM Thread Starter
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Should I pay... or fight it?

I don't want to get into specifics too much, but I recieved a "dog runs after, or chases motor vehicles" citation recently because my dog-hating, rather strange "neighbor" (lives 1/3 mile up a dirt road) called the police and made a false complaint.

He told the police my dogs chased his car... I talked to the police because I was so sure I was in the right and said two dogs were on leashes and thus were not chasing a car (and wouldn't anyway- I leash them because of this neighbor so he will not have any excuse to call the police). My old guy was walking right next to me and I grabbed his collar and moved to the side of the road as the car went by- dog can't even "chase" if he wanted to (stiff back legs). And he made no move after the vehicle.

The policeman said I'd had a warning (guy had made a previous false complaint 3 years ago) and gave me the ticket.

I can either pay $50 or go fight it in court.

I don't want to stress over this, but I'm also willing to spend something to pay a lawyer to help me with this situation. There have been so many times when this neighbor has been flying down that road with a plow and I've had to jump to the side to avoid getting hit on a dark, snowy morning.

He told the police that if the dog touched his car, the paint job would cost him $7K, which I highly doubt given many things but the condition of the vehicle for one, and that my dogs weren't anywhere near it for another.

While I did nothing wrong, is this even worth fighting? There is NO leash law in town, just a control law. It is tiny town and police are AC. When I took my dogs out this morning, the police SUV was cruising up and down the dead-end dirt road, which was a bit spooky but I went on our normal walk. I often run with my dogs on the dirt back roads in town with them off leash but under control with plenty of vehicles passing. No issues. This neighbor has passed me at least 50 times over the past few years, so I'm not sure why he decided to call the police this time, but he did.

It just seems so wrong... but I don't know what to do. I only have 4 days to pay the ticket, but paying is admission of guilt. I am so frustrated with this whole situation. I have talked to this neighbor and it went nowhere. He made up things and said he was afraid my dogs would jump through the windows into his car after him (with no reason to think this could ever happen).

It was especially galling when the policeman told me that his personal dog is always getting lose and running the neighborhood because of his "hound nose" and when I asked if he got a $50 fine every time he said nobody calls the cops on him... no surprise there! But just wow. Again, my dogs don't run the neighborhood, ever, and did nothing illegal.
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post #2 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 06:19 PM
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What happened to proof? I would think the police would need proof of this. There must be a complaint or harassment claim against false complaints. You can turn and say his dog scraped your car since you need no proof. It can be a ping pong game back and forth. If you pay the fine for this accusation, it does not mean your neighbors false complaints will stop but will be evidence that you are in agreement to this complaint and may give future complaints more strength. I would seek a lawyer for advise.

I had a neighbor many years ago who swore my very old and arthritic german shepherd killed one of her chickens. She had said she saw a german shepherd running down the street, my german Shepherd never killed any animals even small ones nor ever wanted to chase them. At the time he can barely get up to get a drink. I just laughed at her and knew what Kind of person she was. A few years later she found out foxes killed her chickens. Some you see what they want or truly believe.
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post #3 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 06:27 PM
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I don’t see how a fine could be charged solely on the word of another without video or something to back it up, seems odd. I would fight an accusation I didn’t do and I would use a go-pro for walks here on out.
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post #4 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 07:12 PM
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I was thinking small town politics might make it worth paying. But if you admit guilt once...
I would speak to a lawyer about your neighbor making false accusations AND the police issuing a fine on hearsay.
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post #5 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 07:12 PM
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Would you be prepared to make a complaint of wrongful police practice, after having a friendly chat to the police officer about it?
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post #6 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 07:25 PM
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Ugh how infuriating. I would appear and fight it. A payment is an admission of guilt. And plus if it continues, what is to stop him? If it isnt too much trouble I would also wear a GoPro on walks. It stinks to have to do that, but if you think the harassment and false accusations will continue...

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post #7 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 07:42 PM
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Fight it, no doubt.

If you pay the fine, it is on record that you admitted guilt, because you didn't dispute it.
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post #8 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 07:44 PM
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Fight, what happens when he gets a scratch and bleeds and your dog "Bit" him. May be video cams pointing at the street for video of his driving?
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post #9 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 07:44 PM
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I would fight it, simply for the fact that if you pay it and anything happens with your dog later on down the road, you will already have a record of an out of control dog and will be almost immediately guilty of something new in anyone's mind. Plus, if you pay it once, your neighbor may continue to make false complaints, and you won't be taken seriously if you decide to fight new charges later. Your dog was guilty of chasing cars once. Why wouldn't he/she be guilty this time? Get a lawyer.
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post #10 of 51 (permalink) Old 06-18-2019, 07:48 PM
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If you look up my court records, you’ll find a zillion speeding tickets (lead foot, not my fault &#x1f602, two marriages and there quick demise into divorce, and last, but not least, a dog at large citation. That citation was from over 20yrs ago, but still shows up on my record.

What happened was a my idiot ex would take the trash out, and leave the side gate wide open, and our puppy would book it. Wasn’t even my fault, but I’m the one that answered the door, so I got the fine and the record for it.

So for me, I would take the time and fight it. In our town, 3 of any type of dog related occurrences lead to very heavy fines, and they seize your dog.

For me, it would be worth it on principle alone.
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