HOUSTON — A Houston woman who'd gone her entire life without a speeding ticket is off the hook after a judge dismissed the ticket she got for going two miles over the speed limit.
Cindy Nguyen, 66, said Houston Municipal Courts sent her a letter that said the ticket for going 37 mph in a 35 mph zone was dismissed because it was "defective."
Editor's note: The video above originally aired on Jan. 4.
Nguyen was surprised when she was pulled over on Richmond Avenue between Gessner and Chimney Rock on Jan. 3.
"When I looked at the citation, 'Speeding 37 mph in a 35 mph zone,' I started scratching my head, how could this be possible," her husband, Omar Sharif said. "My biggest concern is this is just a misuse of the resources and taxpayer money not going to the right place. Crime is skyrocketing in Houston."
When Sharif took a closer look at the ticket, he noticed something odd. His wife got the ticket on Jan. 3, but it was dated 12-31-2023.
"It's in the future, it's almost a year ahead of us," Sharif said.
Before our original story aired on Jan. 4, KHOU 11 reached out to HPD for comment but they declined. After it went viral, they reached out.
A spokesperson said Nguyen was actually driving 15 miles over the speed limit when she was stopped. The officer claimed he clocked her doing 50 in a 35 mph zone, but said he wrote 37 mph on the ticket to "give Mrs. Nguyen a break."
As far as the date of the ticket, HPD blamed a glitch in their system that has since been fixed.
What the law says
KHOU 11 legal analyst Carmen Roe said driving any amount over the speed limit is considered breaking the law.
"An officer has the discretion to ticket you for any amount over the marked speed limit, even one mile over," Roe said.
She advises folks in these situations to hire an attorney or fight the ticket themselves. The good news is most of the time you can win.
"Oftentimes, cases like this, particularly just a few miles over the speed limit, they go away the first day you show up in court," Roe said.
Nguyen and her husband had planned to challenge the ticket in court but now they won't have to.