“Why didn’t you stop for the red light?”

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People are funny because they tend to all say the same thing in similar situations when the police catch them doing something wrong. There are some answers that you can bet on to be the same every time.

These common answers can be fun to work with because you can see them coming a mile away. Of course, it depends on the situation, but there are times when I can be two questions ahead of someone because I’ve already been in that particular situation thousands of times before.

“I paused” is one such answer when it comes to failing to stop for a stop sign or a red light.

I recently stopped a man for making a right turn against a red light at an intersection without stopping. He did it right in front of me, so I pulled him over. After he stopped, I walked up on the driver side and asked him for his driver’s license. I then asked him about the violation while he looked through his wallet.

“Why didn’t you stop for the red light?” I asked.

“I paused.”

“You paused?”

“Yes, I paused.”

“Do you have a DVR at home?” I asked.

“Yes,” the man answered with a confused look on his face.

“When you’re watching a movie and you press the pause button what happens to the movie?”

“It stops.”

“So, why didn’t you stop for the red light then?

It was like the wheels were turning in his head as he squinted, trying to figure out what just happened. The look on his face was great because he wasn’t expecting that question. That might have been the first time he heard that question, but it was probably my one hundredth time asking it. This then set up my next question.

“So, you really didn’t stop, right?”

“No,” he said with a defeated look.

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