ASK A COP: Do you need to come to a complete stop when turning right on red?

Published 12:02 am Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Heather from Port Neches asks: My sister and I or at odds about turning right at a red stop light. My sister is constantly turning right at the intersection while the light is red without coming to a complete stop. She believes since she’s not turning reckless in front of traffic or being reckless there’s no law against her turning. I always tell her I don’t believe her turning is legal. Can you please help us with this matter? If I’m wrong I’ll leave her alone and apologize for being a nagging sister. Is it wrong to turn at a traffic intersection when the light is red without coming to a complete stop?

Answer: I’m not quite sure where this driving behavior or misunderstanding came from, but you are correct and your sister is wrong for not stopping her vehicle before turning right at the light. ALL motor vehicles are required, when wanting to turn right at a traffic signal intersection that’s Red, to STOP. I don’t like using the term “complete stop” because the word STOP means just that: STOP. Your vehicle wheels needs to be motionless before attempting to turn right, no matter how clear the intersection may be. You must STOP. The name of the violation is “Disregarding a Red Light” or commonly known as “Running a Red Light.” Every time your sister turns right at a red light and fails to STOP, she is violating the transportation code of Texas; Disregarding a Traffic Control Device. See the Texas Transportation Code 544.004

Officer Rickey Antoine

Francis from Port Arthur asks: I was discussing driving laws with my cousin the other day, and we got on the subject of outstanding warrants for arrest. She said a coworker of hers had outstanding warrants for driving infractions committed in a different city and her license was suspended because of the warrant. This blew me away. I can’t seem to believe this to be true. Can you get points on your license or have your license suspended for having outstanding warrants for your arrest for traffic infractions?

Answer: I don’t believe the state will suspend your license either for an outstanding warrant for a traffic citation, but the state can/will DENY renewal of said driver’s license if a court reports to the state that said the license holder failed to report to court or failed to complete the payment agreement. Under the Failure to Appear / Failure to Pay Program, the department may deny the renewal. A license will not be able to be renewed until obligations has been satisfied with every court that reported to the state the active warrant status. Once a license holder has satisfied the court, he or see is able to approach the department to renew their license.

Leon from Groves asks: Please help me and my daughter solve something about her restriction A on her license. She almost never drives with her glasses on because she swears she can see just fine. However, I told her she needs to wear her glasses, and she says she only needs them at night and not the daytime. I told her she’s breaking the law, and she of course begs the difference. Is it permissible to have an “A” restriction and alter whether to wear glasses or not?

Answer: Maybe you can take my place when I’m on vacation (laughing). The state of Texas has a standardized vision test that everyone who has a license issued to them must pass. Well apparently, your daughter couldn’t pass the vision test unless she had on corrective lenses. With that said, the state of Texas requires ALL motorists with the restriction “A” on their license to have corrective lenses on every time they’re operating a motor vehicle on any roadway. It doesn’t matter whether she feels she can see or not, she is driving against her restriction in the daytime and every time she drives without her corrective lens. I can’t begin to tell you how many motorists I’ve stopped with the restriction “A” on their license, and they had to dig for their glasses out of their purse or glove box. Basically, the state of Texas says you can’t drive a vehicle unless you have on corrective lenses.

Join Me, Officer Antoine and the CREW Stephen “Buzzard Boots” Mosley, Lelo “mouth of Hwy 69/73” I Washington & Tejas “Lil Man”Morning Star for Ask A Cop live on KSAP 96.9 FM The Breeze every Tuesday from 1 to 3 p.m. and beyond. Call in questions at 409-982-0247. You can also email questions to rickey.antoine@portarthurtx.gov or leave a voicemail at 409-983-8673. Mail them to Ofc. Rickey Antoine, 645 4th Street, Port Arthur, Texas, 77640. If you happen to see me in public, you can always “Ask A Cop!”