Attleboro Police Nab Crosswalk Offenders During Sting [VIDEO]

Several drivers were cited for neglecting to yield to a police decoy at a crosswalk.

officers worked with Attleboro City Councilor Duff White this morning to capture drivers who did not yield to let White cross County Street in a marked crosswalk.

White, who was wearing a bright red sweatshirt and carrying a police radio, was the decoy during the sting operation run by Attleboro Police Sgt. Jeffrey Pierce. White crossed County Street in front of the entrance repeatedly. While many cars slowed down to yield and let White cross, others blew right past him.

In one instance when a car stopped to let White cross the street, another zoomed by as White was still attempting to cross the street.

One by one, the drivers that violated Chapter 29, Section 11 law were stopped by one of two groups of Attleboro Police officers on each end of County Street waiting to give them a citation. The law states that when traffic signals are not in place or not in operation, the driver of the vehicle shall yeild the right of way, slowing down or stopping if needed to yield to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a marked crosswalk.

According to Chief Kyle Heagney, the four-hour sting resulted in 19 $200 civil fines, 10 written warnings and four seat belt violations. Police stopped 47 cars and handed citations to 16 drivers during a similar sting in June.

Councilor White, who is chairman of the City's Committee on Transportation, has been a proponent of enforcing the marked crosswalks law, especially in the area of the sting where many residents cross County Street to get to Capron Park & Zoo.

White said he offered his assistance to Sgt. Pierce, who is a co-member of the Traffic Study Commission, earlier in the year after residents of the Bushee Street area appeared before the Traffic Study Commission.

"Seeing how the Attleboro Police Department operates first hand allows a better understanding of how to approach traffic issues before my Committee on the Municipal Council," White said. "I appreciate the opportunity afforded me by all of the members of the police department I was fortunate enough to work with and look forward to helping again in the future if they believe it can help both the department and the Council.

"It is worth noting that I will be a more attentive driver, after having witnessed for almost four hours the number of motorists who are not," he added.

Wednesday's sting was also conducted at County Street near Bushee Street and then North Main Street in front of

Steven Scott October 12, 2011 at 08:28 PM
After reading this, IF I were given a ticket during this sting I would be fighting it in court. You have a civilian witnessing the violation,then radioing the cops down the road? So if I say you didn't stop for me and I report your plate number will you be sent a ticket?
Adam Tellier October 13, 2011 at 12:38 AM
I think this was a great idea. It completed two tasks: 1.) Reminded those who got pulled over for it (and the one witnessing it) that they must all yield for people in the cross-walk. 2.) Allowed Councilor White to get a first hand look as to how difficult it is, at time, for a pedestrian to cross the street. In regards to Steve's comment, I'm not sure that they are violating any laws, regulations, or rights of anyone. What I am sure of is that it is slowly making Attleboro safer to run/ walk on. As a regular cross country runner, that is extremely important to me.
Kendelle Aronson October 13, 2011 at 01:22 AM
I'm all for it and have asked for it in a school zone by Hill Roberts Elementary School. I can't tell you how many times I've tried to cross my kids across Rt 123 in a crosswalk and NO ONE stops. Last year as I was walking my girls to school a lady did stop and she got rear ended by a girl who wasn't paying attention. This is a major issue. I welcome the patrols but do it all over the city, not just near the park. This is the 2nd sting I recall happening near the park. Try a school zone where the speed limit is 20 mph and they STILL don't stop!!!
Steven Scott October 13, 2011 at 01:34 AM
Don't get me wrong I am all for it, I just think a plain clothed cop should of been the decoy not a civilian. This brings at least 2 issues to mind, what if something had happened and White was run over, would the city be just as liable as the driver? After all he was working as a police decoy with no training and probably not covered the same as a regular duty cop would be. Then the fact that in order for a cop to write a ticket doesn't he have to actually see the violation?
JEROME R October 13, 2011 at 11:53 AM
Great idea...well done..people have seen to forget about the cross walks...lets us not forget our kids try to cross these same streets ...lets keep them safe!!! RE: SCOTT its not a civilian...its a city councilor..great job paying attention!!!
Jacob October 13, 2011 at 01:05 PM
I always thought that city councilors were civilian legislators... guess I missed that day in humanities when city councilors became members of the military. Silly me. Regardless, to call Duff White anything remotely competent is an enormous compliment.
Gretchen Robinson October 13, 2011 at 02:43 PM
to my fellow respondents: you miss the point. The public, myself included, need to pay more attention to people wanting to cross. The pedestrian still has the right of way but it's so easy to be in a rush and 'not see' the person wanting to cross. I've really been trying to pay more attention and stop but sometimes I pass them and look back and tell mysef, "I should have stopped." I do want to be a responsible driver. These kinds of stories are important reminders--and serve as a warning.
Erin October 13, 2011 at 03:16 PM
I try to be a courteous driver and not only let pedestrians cross the street but also let another driver trying to take a difficult left turn or get out of a side street out into traffic. The problem is that more often than not the driver behind me starts honking and making gestures at me to keep moving. Also frustrating is when the person whom I just showed courtesy to doesn't even look my way to acknowledge it. Unfortunately we live in a world where common courtesy is lacking in most people.
Gretchen Robinson October 13, 2011 at 03:47 PM
I agree totally. I can see someone be rude and then in the next block someone will generously wave me on first. The incivility on the streets mirrors the national incivility in politics (if that isn't too much of a leap). I'm just trying to make sure that I drive well, drive defensively, and remember not to pressure myself to drive faster and ignore the person by the side of the role. I can't control what the other driver does but I can control what I do. And I can choose to focus on the kindly, thoughtful drivers I encounter and not the chumps.
mark October 13, 2011 at 04:31 PM
.. but letting a car enter the roadway from a side street can be considered rude to the people behind you. The major roadway has the right of way. I typically prefer that people aren't courteous to me - at times it can just create confusion.
Gretchen Robinson October 13, 2011 at 04:43 PM
people behind us are supposed to be prepared to stop at any time. It's called driving defensively, noticing when someone is slowing down because someone 100 feet away wants to cross. Simple consideration, good manners, and smart driving. When we get a license, we take responsibility for how we handle the car. At North Main and Holden Street considerate drivers will stop to let the 18 wheeler trucks out. It's less than ideal, in fact it's dangerous and chaotic. Even when someone is trying to turn left there, traffic has to stop to let the driver out. But we encounter these kinds of situations when we drive and have to be prepared for them. Paying attention at all times is key. It's also hard to do. It takes good self discipline to always maintain attention and judge when to let someone out.
Sailor October 13, 2011 at 04:49 PM
Erin, I guarantee you will get honked at by me if you stop in front of me to let some one enter the roadway that has the right of way or to make a left turn. Traffic laws are there for a reason. So people know what to expect in certain circumstances. YOU stopping traffic on a road that has the right of way is NOT courteous it's DANGEROUS. The sad part is if some rear ends you it's THEIR fault instead of yours.
Gretchen Robinson October 13, 2011 at 05:02 PM
Sailor--then how are people supposed to turn left onto North Main Street from Holden Street. If someone doesn't let you out, you're stuck there. We can't put traffic lights everywhere? I go down side streets in order to avoid making a left against traffic.
Erin October 13, 2011 at 05:50 PM
Let me start out by explaining that I don't screech on my brakes at the sight of any car trying to get out of a side street. When I am in slow moving traffic (most often Holden St or the entrance to Studley Elementary) I'll let someone out of a side street. When the honking usually occurs is when I let someone out and then we're not able to move any more than a car length ahead anyway. Letting one car out into traffic or allowing someone to make a left to drop their child off at school isn't going to hurt anyone. Everyone is in a hurry to get where they're going. Crossing guards are taking great risks in an effort to get kids to school safely. Short tempers have largely replaced common courtesy which extends well beyond stopping for someone in a crosswalk.
Steven Scott October 13, 2011 at 05:57 PM
So now City Councilors are empowered to enforce laws? I can just see doof with his plastic sheriffs badge jumping out in front of cars and pointing them over! Maybe they let him sit in the cruiser clapping his hands and smiling all the way back to the station.
Sailor October 13, 2011 at 09:01 PM
@Gretchen Robinson You sit there until it's safe to make your turn. I don't have a problem letting some one out or to make a left turn if traffic is already stopped. I have a problem when some genius stops in front of a line of moving cars to let someone make a left turn in front of them.
betsy October 13, 2011 at 09:19 PM
how about speeding on Slater st? I just took a walk and cars are flying by in a 30 mph winding road. Maybe we could get some citations handed out on this road
Gretchen Robinson October 14, 2011 at 12:32 AM
Every day I see people stop and let others go. It's the best example of citizen cooperation I know of. People voluntarily help to make a situation better. On Holden turning left, you'll never get out if you waited. I'm not advocating stopping to let someone out if you have cars bearing down behind you. The traffic situation would improve a great deal on Rt. 152 and around the City if people would just Slow Down.


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