Physicist Authors Paper To Beat Traffic Ticket

04/17/2012 05:23 PM ET

A University of California, San Diego physicist decided to author a paper he presented in traffic court to prove his innocence and beat the traffic ticket he was issued.

Dmitri Krioukov was facing a $400 fine for not coming to a full stop at a posted sign, but instead of paying a fine, Krioukov says he could not afford he created a paper called “The Proof of Innocence.”

In the 4 page paper complete with a graph and numbers supporting his theory, Krioukov wrote, “We show that if a car stops at a stop sign, an observer, e.g., a police officer, located at a certain distance perpendicular to the car trajectory, must have an illusion that the car does not stop, if the following three conditions are satisfied: (1) the observer measures not the linear but angular speed of the car; (2) the car decelerates and subsequently accelerates relatively fast; and (3) there is a short-time obstruction of the observer’s view of the car by an external object, e.g., another car, at the moment when both cars are near the stop sign.”

After presenting the paper to the judge, Krioukov told him in simpler terms “that the officer that issued him the ticket was a such an angle about 100 feet away he confused the car’s actual (or linear) speed with its angular speed — the rate at which it seemed to go by. If you’d like an analogy, think of yourself on a railroad platform as the express roars past. As the train approaches in the distance, it doesn’t seem to move much, but as it passes you — going no faster — it certainly seems to race by.”

He argued to that point that he came to a full stop but restarted to quickly for the officer to notice mainly due to the fact is small car was blocked from the officers view by a bigger car in the lane next to him.

The impressed judge dropped the fine and ticket against Krioukov. He then joyfully took to the internet to post his paper which he subtitled: “A way to fight your traffic tickets. The paper was awarded a special prize of $400 that the author did not have to pay to the state of California.”


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