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Good Samaritan Saved People From Being Hit By A Car, Got Jaywalking Ticket

Remember the adage "no good deed goes unpunished?" Well, Jim Moffett was helping two elderly women and a man cross a busy Denver street in a snowstorm when a pickup went straight at them - Jim pushed the three out of the way, but got struck himself.

His reward for being a Good Samaritan? A jaywalking ticket:

Family members said 58-year-old bus driver Jim Moffett and another man were helping two elderly women cross a busy Denver street in a snowstorm when he was hit Friday night.

Moffett suffered bleeding in the brain, broken bones, a dislocated shoulder and a possible ruptured spleen. He was in serious but stable condition Wednesday.

The Colorado State Patrol issued the citation. Trooper Ryan Sullivan said that despite Moffett's intentions, jaywalking contributed to the accident.


Previously on Neatorama: Suing a Good Samaritan

Okay but what was he doing ushering people across the street against the light in a snow storm? Good intentions don't automatically make everything done under their umbrella unimpeachable.

Yeah, the ticket's stupid, but.
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The article doesn't say whether the truck had the right of way or not; it sounds like they weren't at a crosswalk, in which case jaywalking is right. It's a shame he got injured so horribly, but you'd think if he cared enough to help the old ladies across the street, he'd care enough to do so in a safe manner. The American legal term for this is "comparative negligence" or "contributory negligence," by the way.
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This is one of those articles that needs the police station / courthouse phone number so that they can be reamed as they deserve. Snow storm, what happens? Crosswalks become untrustworthy, and flooded. Jaywalking?? That's a stupid law anyway. I don't know anyone who has gotten a jaywalking ticket as compared to a speeding ticket, EVERYONE has gotten one. But everyone jaywalks. These clowns need a kick in the teeth and the ticket shoved up their ass.
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My bf once got a jaywalking ticket at a very VERY long road where the nearest intersection/light was the equivelant of 3 city blocks. Yes he would have to walk 6 blocks total to get across the road. (down the street, cross at intersection, back up street).
To top it off, the moron cop gave him another ticket for having an out of state licence, when we had JUST moved 3 days prior (my bf could have lied about having just moved, but he was honest and punished for it.)

Some cops just love to be morons.
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"Jaywalking?? That’s a stupid law anyway."

People's lives, as demonstrated in the article, can be endangered by not crossing at properly controlled and visible crosswalks. I see people on a daily basis running across streets, weaving between cars, against the light and 30 damn feet from the intersection's crosswalk, endangering themselves, the drivers and the kids they drag with them. I mean, seriously, I learned the proper way to cross a street in the 1st grade!

"But everyone jaywalks."

Just the kind of argument I'd expect from an 8-year-old. "But everybody does it!"

Sure, the guy was hurt, but the reason he was hurt was almost certainly because he was jaywalking in the first place. If the people he was helping cross the street in an illegal manner had been hurt, his punishment would have been far, far worse.
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Jaywalking laws are stupid, because a person has a personal responsibility to not cross the street in front of a moving vehicle. If they do it unsafely, it's on them as far as I am concerned.

Looks like this cop needed to make his quota.
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Is the media asking for police officers to ignore the laws when its a 'good' person? The purpose for a law is that there is no grey area - and the media in their portrayal of this event is appealing to the readers emotions to create a story out of nothing. The only people who are victims in this horrible reporting are the police officers of Colorado.

Its this sort of reporting that annoys me
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I've talked myself out of a jaywalking ticket before. I'm disabled, so the thought of having to walk two city blocks to be able to cross the street is laughable. Besides, I was going to a bus stop that was across the street from my house. The cop saw me, I explained my predicament and gave him proof of disability (even showed him my leg, which is scary enough to scare small children in a pool - I know from experience; it really clears the area when it's not adult swim). He thought about it and decided against giving it to me on the grounds that, without that, it would have been impossible for me to get where I was going without having to ride the bus the entire loop. He was really nice, though, so I was probably really lucky.

I can see why he'd walk them across the street like that. A crosswalk may have been too far for those ladies to walk, and I know from experience that slush and ice is nearly impossible to walk on if you need assistance walking. He just didn't want to see them get squashed like he did.
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I've never understood this 'Jaywalking' business, has to be a completely american thing to be so screwed up. You should all try coming to any big city in the UK, where on a single stretch of road you could get 5 - 10 people for Jaywalking. Yet the accident rate is negligible to the number of accidents, caused by DRIVERS not paying attention to the road ahead. If this was the UK, the driver could be prosecuted for failing to drive with Due Care and Attention; especially considering the road conditions. I have to wonder what speed the pick up was going, to cause the injuries this man suffered?
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i agree with krodar, i had never heard of jaywalking until a few years ago when a foreign official, was i think detained for jaywalking to a conference because he had also never heard of such a law. i've been crossing roads myself for years now, sometimes at a crossing sometimes not, but i have never been hit, and i have never caused an accident.
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I find it much safer to cross away from intersection so I only have to look both ways before crossing, instead getting creamed by Mr rolling right on red etc.
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Jaywalking laws are really in place to get more money out of people. They are a big scam. There are no jaywalking laws in the UK because it is assumed one is going to act in the name of self preservation any time they cross the street, and seriously, accidents happen, but if you aren't paying attention, that's your problem. This is at least one area where the Nanny State hasn't stuck its nose in for the sake of control or money making.

On the driver's end of things, getting a driver's license in the States is a joke. It's where I learned to drive. Coming to the UK, I had to start all over again, and after 15 years of driving experience, took lessons for several months before going through a rather grueling driving exam. Drivers here are far more responsible and take the idea that driving is a privelege and not a right very seriously.
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Sure, abolish jaywalking laws. But if you get creamed, you or your family should have to pay the driver reparations for psychological harm.
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What many of you don't know is that the bus stop is between crosswalks that are a 1/2 mile either direction. These ladies were going to cross the street no matter what. Jim knew this and thought he would rather help than not. That is a good samaritan, this other legal gobbley gook is nonsense!!! He is a true American Hero!!
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