So, as a preface, if you are interested in what i am riding, i just posted my set up in general discussion. So a word about small towns. I live in a large (relatively medium actually) city. But, there is a tiny mousefart of a town plopped down inside it. This particular town is what a lot of people refer to as a ticket machine or a ticket trap. Theres a police station, a coffee shop, a gas station, and three or four titty bars, all in a row. And a small neighborhood behind it, that may have a functioning school sometimes. Ive lived here for a while, right across the street from it. Ive seen people pulled over. But ive never had any trouble from the. Never stopped. Never messed with. Nothing. Ridden through in cars. On standard, electric, and gas bikes, probably hundreds of times, at all times of day or night. No stops, Nada. I also did quite a bit of research before starting my motorized bike "hobby" a few years ago. I found out what was legal. How it was legal, and what wasnt and why. It turns out my state is a bit convoluted on the issue, but it boils down to this. A bicycle (with operable human powered pedals) regardless of number of wheels, equipped with a motor not exceeding 80cc, and not capable of mortorized or hybridized powered motion on flat land in excess of 35 mph is for the purposes of the motor vehicle law a BICYCLE. A bicycle requires no license. No registration, no insurance, no title, etc. Electrics may be up to 25 or 30 (dont care to look it up, and im on a gas bike so idc) mph and up to 1k watts for the motor. They are also bicycles. I built to these specs. I have a suspended drivers license, and it was the 4th of July weekend. The burger joint i wanted to go to was on the other side of the said small town. I decided to grab a burger, so i hopped on the gas bike and proceeded through the small town. It was dusk and i did forget to activate my tail light. I did have my head light one and for its size, it puts out light comparable to automotive head lights. I was about half way through the small town and i noticed a vehicle with BRIGHT headlights on hovering steady on my left rear quarter, just behind me. This is a pretty common occurrence as people are either unsure if they can pass, "mothering" me as if i cant ride wirhout their guidance, or they are just rubber necking in the worst possible spot they can. Happens all the time. So, i signal the driver to pass by, and that when the flashing lights so bright you can see the inside of your own skull come on. Well i pull over. Cause thats what you do, and honestly, i have no chance of out running usain bolt much less a proper automobile. Well i can tell this guy isnt the brightest by the first words out of his mouth. Which were: " I'M pullin' YOU over, brother!" As if he thought i might have things reversed by my earlier hand gesture. This is indicative of someone who thinks everyone ought to be aware of their prescence at all times and mercy on the one who isnt. I don't like this guy already. His next words did not elevate him in my estimation at all, quite the opposite really. Those were: (upon approaching me on the curbside) "Why are you riding this?" Not hello, do you know why we stopped you? How are you this evening? Are you aware that you do not have a functioning tail light according to x law? Nope it was "why are you riding this?" This tells me im about to have a bad time of it. Not just because of his word choice, bit his tone also. We'd just met, and he already sounds angry and annoyed with me. It doesn't take me any hands to to count the number of times a relationship that started like this ended well. And to be honest, i got a pretty good look at this guys eyes and listened to him talk a bit. He seemed hopped up a bit. He was itching for a ticket to fill the holiday quota and he could just tell i was in dire need pf a ticket. Well he did the procedurals and asked me for a DL, i told him i had a state id and no DL. He told me i needed a DL for this MOTOR VEHICLE. I told him it wasnt a motor vehicle under state law. He told me to sit tight while he went and researched it. 15 or so minutes later, he comes back and says this is a motor vehicle and im going to jail fpr driving under suspension. Also, hes gonna impound the bike. I reiterated my position that under state law, what i was operating was a motorized bicycle, which is treated as a bicycle. He told me that it was a motor vehicle or how else cpuld he write a dui for it or for a lawn mower ( see his inappropriate leaps in logic and context here?) Or a horse. (I should have pointed out that the dui laws are written for vehilces which include motor vehicles, but doesnt qualify all vehicles as motor vehicles, a false syllogism he used there, i dodnt expect him to understand syllogisms or how he used one falsely.) He also said that they have to require a license or everyone without a license would be riding one around. I pointed out that this isnt true as they are at best clunky junky hobby horses that a person really has to WANT to use to bother with. He didnt have a response to that. He did however show ,e the "legal resource" he used to determine that he had the right to arrest me, kidnap me, steal my property, remand it to the possession of a third party and hold it for ransom. It was a motorized bicycle law aggregator and opinion website. No he didnt go to thenpublicaly available motor vehicle code website maintaoned by the state? No. Did he look at the tax collection department to see whats required to have tax remitted on it? Nope. An opinion website. One that was wrong. It applied the wrong law set to a motorized bicyxle which he then used to justify arresting me. And he knew it. He know exactly where to find any law on motor vehicles he wants, because he showed me the law from the website when he was writing my ticket for driving under suspension. Fun y how he jad actual state law when it helped him! But, what can you do? Well you call a buddy (from my cellphone, in my cell!), you call a bail bondsman, and you yell at someomes kid when he tried to take your money off the "property table" in the booking room/kitchen, and you wait. The bondsman and said buddy show up. I find out the bond will be 20% not 10 and plus, plus, plus! Theres 10% release fee assocoated with this particular small town. So all things, paid, I walk out. Bike is still in the pokey though and thats annoying. For the record, he wrote me two tickets, one for DUS and the other for defective equipmemt for not having the tail light on. I have my court date, so i decide that someone there will see that there was a mistake amd this would be resolved and I would receive my bike and maybe my release fee refunded.. Yeah right. I got to court (repping myself on the advice of an attorney that an attorney was an unnecessary expense for this case) and spoke to the town prosecutor and who defaulted to making me a ridiculous offer of not doubling the defective equipment ticket because of the DUS ticket. I quoted the law (verbatim with references should he have cared to look it up) to him and told him i was pleading not guilty since what i was doing wasnt driving but riding a bicycle. He told me he didnt agree and he would see me at trial. Let me takenthis moment to describe the peosecutor to you as the sort of man from whom you get the distinct impression that he has never touched a breast either with permission or for free. But i digress. Trial is set for two weeks later and during that time i decide that its just too expensive to let the bike set in hoc any longer and i bail it out. I have twice during this period spoken to superiors in the police department whom are alk baffled as to why I was stopped and arrested because they know what i have is a bicycle. But they cant do anything bexause the officer wrote it as a moped which is defferent under the law. Whatever, they cant help me directly. But they didnt a one of them offer to just waive then $50 fee that allows you to go to the car jail and pay the real ransom. So trial rolls around, and have printed copies from the states law website of the pertinent laws and description of my device ready to get up in front of the judge and plead my case. Yes sir i was ready. You know what those scurvy dogs did? They dropped the case. On procedure. Because the cops didnt show up to work that day. Not on merit. Basically a reverse alford plea "We arent saying we were wrong to have arrested you and taken your stuff, we are just saying we cant convict you for what we arrested you on" The prosecutor warned me even after seeing the law and descriptions that they would try to file at the county level and see if the county wanted to pick it up. Whats this all mean, well since they never admitted they shouldnt have done what they did, they got to keep my pre ransom ransom fees , and at some point this could pop back up to bite me. The county i live in doesnt issue suponeas for traffic issues, they just issue bench warrants so they can charge you and mess up your day good and proper. Fortunately, thats not going to happen cause the little town has a reputation and everyone both hates it and finds it amusing. They would have looked at it and said, you want us to take an obviously bunged up case your officers couldn't be bothered to show up for, where they work, nor is there an actual report written for it. Yeah, we'll pass. But about $800 later ive gotten through it and if I learned anything its this: What the law is doesnt really matter. Its what the cop wants it to be that matters. Know the cops in the area you ride through and how they feel about things because thats the people you deal with on this stuff. The pain in the ass is too great to chance it, if you doubt their knowledge, they avoid them if you can. Stay cautious out there.