In most states you'd do a "Transfer of Title" and a Bill of Sale, so that the car goes from the owner previous to you, to the next owner, and your name never appears on a title or registration; however, this is in *some* states, and I have no idea how your state works. Most "sales taxes" on cars is really a use tax, so if you claim it was never on the road, I don't think you'd have to pay a sales tax.
But you, or the new owner, would be liable for all past due registration fees, with penalties, so that could add up to a hundred/two hundred bucks. Again, in some states, you can put the car on a "non-op" status so that during non-use, you don't accrue registration fees either.
Now then, if you have outstanding tickets on this car, that complicates everything enormously, as it PROVES you were using the car---this is a "paper trail" and could trip you up and perhaps inflict a sales tax.
My advice for people going to DMV is always the same---plead ignorance, show them minimal paperwork, and ask them for their expert advice. Listen, don't talk. DMV will often give you hints on how to work the system.
What you wish to admit to or not admit to is your business.