@ anonawesome...that's NOT what I said at all!!!! that is insanity. The only person that can take the actual human being into consideration regarding the "fine/sentencing" is the judge, and only if you go to court. The only choices the officer has is to cite, not to cite, or give a written warning. When you read the Calif. penal code (and It's been 10 years since I have, I'm an R.N. now---so you can like me again
) the punishments say " from a minimum of this, to a maximum of that" so yes, take your ticket, say a $500 fine just for an example. You can either mail in the total amount, OR see the judge, talk to them, explain yourself, and they can say, not guilty (no fine/fees) or guilty and waive the fees, or set the fine from $1 all the way to the maximum. Judges have tremendous (and yes, sometimes they do abuse it) authority. You seem like a likeable guy, just present yourself like that, be honest, and I'd bet you'll walk out of there with some $$ left over to buy that mirror hehe.