A Judge is Outmatched
I am a judge for Montréal Municipal Court. Currently I only take care of hearing contestations for parking and traffic violations. Montréal Municipal Court also take care of penal, criminal and civil cases. Please note this is very different from Small Claims Court.
I studied three years at the University of Montréal in Law, hoping to become a civil right attorney. After five years of work for a large legal firm, I was very lucky to see an opening in the region I lived in. I applied, got the job, and absolutely love it.
… Here is a case that I consider very funny and that I will never forget.
One day the defendant was a prominent mathematics teacher at the UQAM (québec university). He was being charged with a $42 parking violation. What surprised me is that he took three hours out of his high-paying job to come here.
He was unlucky because the parking agent is a veteran who always come to every trial and wins in the majority of cases. I was wondering what kind of defense the teacher would pull off. He starts the audience like this:
“Your honor, the proof I am not guilty fits on a single sheet. As a mathematician, I here have the absolute and irrefutable proof that I am not guilty”
I take his sheet and I can’t understand a single word.
From what I could read, it was advanced mathematics. He drew a rough representation of the street, then calculated geometrical dimension of his car. I could read “Graph Theory” underlined at the top, along with hundreds of symbols I did not understand. To make things even worse, at the bottom right, there was a long derivation. That’s about all I could get.
I turned the sheet to the left, to the right and then bottom-up but none of it made sense to me. I couldn’t even tell if he really worked on that proof or just wrote random symbols. I had two choices: I could hire another mathematician to analyse his “proof,” which would cost hundreds, if not thousands of dollars, or declare he was not guilty. To me, the choice was obvious.
Entry filed under: Funny.