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Matt Weinstock -- March 7, 1959

March 7, 2009 |  4:00 pm

The Case of Judge Pfaff

Matt_weinstockd_4 This was the week of Superior Court Judge Roger Alton Pfaff's great disillusionment.

On receiving what he considered an unjustified speeding citation (45 in a 25) he said angrily, "In 12 years on the bench I've been accepting the word of police officers. Now I'm shocked that any of them would so falsify a citation."

He insisted he was going between 30 and 35 when he passed the police car. He announced he will plead not guilty when he appears in traffic court Monday.

The officers, Gerald Jackson and Terry Lewis, insist it was just another ticket and they called it as they saw it.

Meanwhile, back among the common people, the affair was viewed as high comedy.

WHEN HE SAT in traffic court, Judge Pfaff earned a reputation for severity. It was said of him that he would sentence his mother to jail if the evidence showed she was guilty.

1959_0307_duncanNow some motorists whose wings he clipped are bubbling with delight. They came away from his court feeling they'd been unfairly two-timed -- by the gendarmes and by the judge.

The way things are going this could be the ticket that launched a thousand quips.

One reader insists the trial should be held in the Coliseum and motorists who feel they have been bum-rapped admitted free.

Another wonders if Judge Pfaff will sacrifice a day's pay, as others must do, when he goes to trial.

Another hopes that some kindly old motorist will take him for a long walk and tell him the facts of life about traffic valentines.

Another hopes that out of the case may come an awareness that the LAPD, under the lash of the master, gives out too many tickets for minor offenses.

However, let us not stoop to one editorial writer's paraphrased appraisal of the case -- jug not that ye be not jugged.

* *

MENTION HERE that the gyp artist who poses as a toaster repair man and makes off with expensive hotel bread browners is amok again reminded a fun-loving friend of the time a toaster almost broke up his happy home.

1959_0307_juke_boxes_2The little lady complained that the darn thing wouldn't pop out the toast far enough, causing it to burn. Inspired, he prevailed upon a repair man to put an extra strong spring in it. When she tried it the toast hit the ceiling.

He thought this was very funny but she didn't. And when she took the toaster back to the repair man for adjustment the blabbermouth said her husband ordered it that way. So, the doghouse.

* *

WELL WE LOST another one. A note signed Texas Tom states, "This town is no good. Even the bums here are no good. L.A. has more bums in high and low places than anywhere else. I'm going back to Texas."

Betcha our brand of muscatel is better than your brand of muscatel.

* *

It takes a lot of living
To make a house to suit,
Yup, it takes a lot of living
Plus an awful lot of loot.

* *

1959_0307_abby TRAFFIC DETAIL -- Those five car-pool fellows, young exec types, who play cards in the back of a Volkswagen Microbus, were at it again on Whittier Boulevard the other morning en route to work . . . An ABC-TV exec is glad the legislature revised the vehicle code number for drunken driving. He had extension 502 and took some teasing.

* *

FOOTNOTES -- A Hollywoodian got a call the other night asking if he'd watched a certain TV program. He said he had, briefly, then turned it off. And then he wanted to know how the caller had gotten his unlisted phone number. The battle still rages . . . People in East L.A. find it appropriate that Lou Costello will be buried in Calvary Cemetery in their area. His Junior Foundation on E Olympic Boulevard is a landmark to his philanthropy . . . A onetime high-bracket movie star was seen at the $2 show window at Santa Anita and Walt Hackett couldn't help observing, "That's show business."