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Old 03-05-2012, 10:51 AM   #1
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Red light camera nail you? Maybe a way out

A couple of CA Appellate Court rulings could help you: People v. Borzakian and People v. Khaled, both 2010 rulings.

Red light cameras can violate the hearsay rule, the confrontation clause and due process.

Possibly, these two cases can also affect "speed traps". Not sure.

Maybe someone has some more detailed info.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:07 AM   #2
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If they do let's hear them. These cameras being installed at intersections can be a pain. It doesn't seem that the time schedule is accurate with the lights changing and catching you going thru a red light. It hasn't happened to us but many have complained. One good one though was in Fl where the cameras captured some cattle russlers that had run a red light. To bad for them.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:17 AM   #3
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I just figure if one abides by the lights, one does not have to worry about the camera's.

Houston spent millions of dollars on cameras, only to have a referendum or something that voted them out. They cannot be used for traffic violations.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:19 AM   #4
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Quote:
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I just figure if one abides by the lights, one does not have to worry about the camera's.
I totally agree.
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Old 03-05-2012, 12:06 PM   #5
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I don't consider myself a 'paranoid' person, but sometimes I wonder what the real reason is for the cameras and if they're not subsidized by a 'higher' entity. These things cost many thousands of dollars to install and cost hundreds of thousands to monitor and maintain. With many town/cities hurting for capital these days and some not able to legally reap the dollars from light runners, what are they there for and who is ponying the cost. I just don't get it.

Even if these municipalities are able to collect, after a while the population knows they're there...I would think that collections at those intersections would drop DRAMATICALLY. Who pays the bills after that? Just wonder'n... Bob
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Old 03-05-2012, 12:23 PM   #6
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I don't see how they are constitutional. Here in NC, the law says that 100% of revenues from traffic infractions are to go to the schools. Over 50% of the revenue from the traffic cameras goes to some company in Florida that owns and operates them.

Secondly, the law says that I have the right to confront my accusers in a court of law. Not possible here. Automated robo-accusing.

Thirdly, the law says the burdon of proof lies with the state. They often can not prove who was operating the vehicle at the time, instead they require you to prove you weren't.

Couple all this with the shortening of yellow light durations to increase infractions and the fact that the cameras have not had a positive impact on safety, and the red light cameras all seem pointless. Just another road tax, really.
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Old 03-05-2012, 01:04 PM   #7
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I have to admit I consider most of them fee collection booths for the state. Personally dealt with a horrible case here in CA where the camera was sneakily concealed at a right turn corner where you had to drive beyond the line to see oncoming traffic. We got photo'd and fined $450 for stopping beyond the line. A total scam in my mind. We wrote twice to the courts pointing out the lack of visibility and asking for additional photos before the turn to prove we had stopped before the line as well as after. Well since burden of proof lay with us they simply denied the requests. Next step would have required lawyers and time neither of which we had at that time.

They must have made a mint off that camera. Wonder if it's still there.
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Old 03-05-2012, 01:32 PM   #8
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Ticket Schmiket! Just use this: No More Red Light Camera Tickets. Make Your Car Invisible To Police Speed Cameras With Our License Plate Cover, PhotoBlocker Spray, Radar Detectors, GPS, GPS Camera Detectors. Got A Traffic Ticket? Don?t Pay Yet. We Can Help Fight Your Speeding Citat
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Old 03-05-2012, 01:37 PM   #9
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Red Light Cameras and Border Crossing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooter View Post
A couple of CA Appellate Court rulings could help you: People v. Borzakian and People v. Khaled, both 2010 rulings.

Red light cameras can violate the hearsay rule, the confrontation clause and due process.
It's like illegal immigration, eh?

Think about.

I mean, in both cases, a law has been technically broken; but, conventional wisdom clouds the issue and we're asking for leniency...

Personally, I'm for totally automated traffic control. Everyones demands it, in the skies; why not on the ground, inside the public highway system?

Really, we need to be cautious about advocating for immunity from breaking the law. Else, it's hard to make arguments against things like, for one, illegal immigration. Or, maybe the right of burgulars to use technology in the future to assess/disable your home alarms or maybe to evade police. Even here, I don't hear anyone advocating that other drivers should be immune from red lights and speed limits, just themselves.



For the time being, we all need to take a close look at DW, happily reading in the passenger seat and imagine life without her. She might well be one of the 150 people estimated to have been saved during the first five years of camera deployment.
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Old 03-05-2012, 01:41 PM   #10
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My daughter got caught by a camera making a left turn in Scottsdale, AZ in November. She was in a rental car, so she was assessed $40 by a Montana company that tracks down drivers for the rental companies when tickets are issued. Seems its in the fine print of the rental agreement. Scottsdale wanted $250 for the infraction. I did a little research...

Scottsdale issues over 200 tickets a day with their 4 stop light cameras. ($50,000 a day)

The photo had the yellow light interval printed right on the photo...3 seconds. According to the AZ DOT, this was less than the 45 mph speed should demand.

Also, the photo showed construction had reduces the intersection to 1 lane, she had waited 3 LONG cycles before following the car in front through the light.

There are issues with the camera tickets since you can't 'confront your accuser in court...its a machine.

My daughter lives in Australia. Turns out according to AZ law, a traffic ticket must be served IN PERSON like any other court summons. I recommended she wait for a knock on her door in Byron Bay, NSW.

The company that installs and maintains the cameras makes 50% of the income generated....What a racket!

i believe we need rules and fines for those who don't follow them, but this is a pure money grab, not a safety issue.
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Old 03-05-2012, 01:41 PM   #11
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My son in Law was a police officer and I mentioned I might have had my photo taken by one of the lights. He said not to worry - the city only had the money for the lights and could not pay for the software and service. This was several years ago and I suspect the city now has the lights functioning.
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Old 03-05-2012, 02:00 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BFlinn181

The company that installs and maintains the cameras makes 50% of the income generated....What a racket!
Exactly my problem with the whole setup. The cameras are placed by the companies who manage them in the spots where they're expected to make the most income, not where they're needed for most safety.

The spot we were ticketed was definitely a pure money scam. No way you could turn there *safely* without pulling forward to see oncoming traffic. A case of income over safety (and logic) in my mind.
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Old 03-05-2012, 02:16 PM   #13
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Quote:
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I just figure if one abides by the lights, one does not have to worry about the camera's...
I totally agree.
Same here.
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Old 03-05-2012, 03:05 PM   #14
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I don't see how they are constitutional. Here in NC, the law says that 100% of revenues from traffic infractions are to go to the schools. Over 50% of the revenue from the traffic cameras goes to some company in Florida that owns and operates them...
Unless the law already specifies net or gross revenues, it would be up to the courts to determine the legality of that. Also, constitutionality has nothing to do with it unless the State or Federal Constitution states so. I know the Federal doesn't and I doubt North Carolina's does either.

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...Secondly, the law says that I have the right to confront my accusers in a court of law. Not possible here. Automated robo-accusing...
You do have the right to confront your accusers...in a court of law. Just show up for your court appointment. The camera is not doing the accusing; that would be ludicrous. The jurisdiction using the camera is doing the accusing. Saying evidence gathered from a camera can't be used against you is the same as saying the use of a radar gun is invalid for determining your speed or that evidence from a robbery gathered with security cameras is invalid. Instances where tickets from speed cameras were declared invalid have mostly been due to poorly written laws and/or poorly interpreted by the courts. Both have occurred in AZ, the court rulings encouraged by Gov. Brewer's personal dislike of red light and speeding cameras.

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...Thirdly, the law says the burdon of proof lies with the state. They often can not prove who was operating the vehicle at the time, instead they require you to prove you weren't...
In AZ, the jurisdiction issuing the ticket does have to prove you were the one driving the vehicle. If the photo taken of the driver could not be clearly seen and matched to the driver's license of the vehicle owner, the ticket was rarely issued. Many drivers are able to dodge the ticket by covering their faces. There was one idiot in Scottsdale who deliberately sped through the red light cameras on a section of freeway wearing a monkey mask. The photos were useless for issuing tickets. The police were eventually able to catch the jerk in the act and he got slammed with charges such as obstructing justice, etc. in addition to the speeding ticket.

Some jurisdictions have considered passing laws making the owners of vehicles used to commit crimes responsible for the crime unless they can prove they were not driving the vehicle. I haven't heard whether that has been done successfully.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramblin View Post
...Couple all this with the shortening of yellow light durations to increase infractions and the fact that the cameras have not had a positive impact on safety, and the red light cameras all seem pointless. Just another road tax, really.
Actually, the cameras have been proven to have had a positive impact on safety.

As far as shortening yellow light durations, this thread is the first time I have ever heard of this happening. If is (and it very well may be), it hasn't happened in very many places and very likely can be fought in court.

Frankly, all I've been seeing in this thread are just poor rationalizations attempting to justify running red lights. Even if you run one accidentally, the law still requires you maintain full control of your vehicle at all times. Running a light accidentally means you were either distracted or not paying attention, meaning you were not in full control of your vehicle during that distraction, you were trying to run the yellow, which is deliberate reckless driving, or you were deliberately running the light which is outright law breaking. Even if it was due to distraction, running the light could result in property damage, injury, or death to yourself and/or others.

Most appalling is the attitude of so many people in this country who judge whether or not to obey laws on their abilty to avoid getting caught.

Personally, I favor speeding and red light cameras. They do work and they free up LEOs to protect us from more serious crime instead of having to play nursemaid on immature drivers too selfish and inconsiderate of others to obey traffic laws. Keep in mind, driving is a privilege, not a right.
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