Judge: Red Light Cameras Lower Cost Fine Is Unconstitutional


Red Light Camera Tree Setup

Red Light Camera Tree Setup

So if someone gets pulled over by police for running a red light, the fine cost’s more? And apparently if your caught by a red-light-camera, you don’t get the usual points on your drivers license?  That’s interesting.

From Tampa Bay’s Fox 13 News: TAMPA – Red-light cameras: They are controversial and the source of much debate.

Now, a Broward County judge says it’s unconstitutional that red-light runners caught by police face stiffer penalties than drivers caught on camera. He’s ruled that police officers in his area that spot red-light runners can’t write them tickets.

“When we have people like that in place that are working against us instead of with us, it really is a sad day,” said Melissa Wandall, whose husband Mark was killed by a driver that ran a red light in 2003.

Wandall said to this day she sees drivers blowing through the intersection where her husband was killed. A remembrance rests there, a mile from their home.

Wandall fought long and hard in Tallahassee to get the Mark Wandall Traffic Safety Act passed, paving the way for the use of red-light cameras.

State lawmakers almost banned the cameras last session. The House voted for it, but the bill died in the Senate.

Wandall said there’s a good reason for different penalties.

“If we had matched the same as it is when you ran a red light when you’re ticketed by an officer, the bill was not going to pass. They would not allow it,” she said.

Red-light runners caught on camera are fined $125, plus fees. Red-light runners spotted by police are fined more than $250 and get three points on their license.

Attorney Jack Townsend is working on a class action lawsuit against the city of Temple of Terrace and its red-light cameras. He thinks the Broward County judge’s ruling is correct.

“Since now we have two laws in the state that are competing in the amount of the fine, we can’t have that,” he said.

Townsend doesn’t believe red light cameras even make intersections safer and is hopeful the judge’s action will set a precedent leading to their end.

“If they’re giving tickets in an illegal fashion or a non-constitutional fashion, then the state has to quit doing that,” he said.

Wandall, however, said she won’t stop fighting.

“These people can continue to keep whining and crying. They are getting tickets because they are running red lights,” she said.

The Attorney General’s office is planning to repeal the judge’s decision in Broward County.

Red-light cameras debate rages on: MyFoxTAMPABAY.com

2 comments for “Judge: Red Light Cameras Lower Cost Fine Is Unconstitutional

  1. Hotstuff
    04/02/2012 at 10:00 PM

    Not only do I hate speed traps, I don’t agree with the whole “big brother” mentality of the government either! IMHO, traffic cameras are both unconstitutional and unfair, especially if you get nabbed due to a faulty setup or there are extenuating circumstances. So if you really want to avoid getting ” illegally” ticketed, you can try this cool trick. It makes your license plateInvisible to red light and speed cameras. As an added bonus, the cops just hate it.. which makes it even better 😀 ! Check it out Here

    • 04/04/2012 at 8:26 AM

      I don’t know what is the sleaziest, the red light cameras, or the guy that goes around spamming blog comments with a link (with the spammers referral id) to buy some other sleaze product that probably don’t work anyway.

      It’s really simple folks, when the light turns RED you stop. And just remember, if your going 60 and the light turns yellow, just slam on the brakes and make a panic stop! If you get rear ended by a cop that was following you, It’s his fault for following to close and not having his vehicle under control.

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