Police challenging 'ticket trap' ruling
MONTREAL - The police department and the City of Montreal are appealing a ruling that overturned a $154 ticket for driving in a reserved bus lane.
The judge who threw out the case said police had unfairly set up a ticket trap near the intersection of Cremazie Blvd. and Christophe Colomb Ave.
The incident occurred in January 2010, when Roger Labrecque pulled out of an A&W parking lot and headed east on Cremazie Blvd.
Drivers leaving the restaurant have no choice but to pull into a reserved bus lane, but they cannot see any indication they are in the lane until several dozen meters after passing through the intersection at Christophe-Colomb Ave.
Labrecque testified in court that as soon as he saw the sign he attempted to get out of the reserved lane, but that drivers in bumper-to-bumper traffic would not let him enter.
With a bus behind him, Labrecque continued driving until he was pulled over by police officers who had also stopped several other drivers for the same offence.
Labrecque won his case in municipal court, but this past Friday he received legal notice of the appeal.
Police appeals of municipal court decisions are very common, because the force is worried about setting legal precedent.
They argue that if the courts ban traffic traps, they will be unable to effectively enforce the highway safety code.