Ticket's in the mail: Red-light cameras questioned

Full story: Santa Cruz Sentinel

Minutes after Neel Manglik illegally turned right on a red light in the Des Moines suburb of Clive, a video popped up on a computer at an office park outside Scottsdale, Ariz.
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21 - 40 of 57 Comments Last updated Apr 4, 2014
Get it striaght

San Jose, CA

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#23
Mar 16, 2009
 
Jesse Dresbach wrote:
Bob, it's not that simple. You can fight the ticket, but you'll lose. You can ask for a reduction, but then you are NO LONGER eligible for traffic school. And, to get traffic school, you have to pay in full, immediately. What's more, is that if a red light ticket gets on your record, that's really bad news for insurance. Mine would have gone up 300 dollars, and stay that way for three years.
By the way, the insurance company tells me that CA no longer lets them overlook if you have one violation, they count them all now.
So I HAD to get that thing off my record. What's worse? Here's why I got the ticket. Turning right from 41st to Claires St., the light was red. The car in front of me turns, and the light flashes. I stop, then make my right turn... it flashes again.
I paid almost $500 for turning right on red, that is allowed. I tried to fight it, and they said "OK, so you didn't stop for 3 seconds then" which, shouldn't that be a different violation? Then we watched the video. I stop for 2 seconds. not 3.
I ask, can i take this to court? "Sure, but you'll probably lose and then you will no longer be eligible for traffic school" $300 per 6 month insurance term for 3 years? I HAD to get this off my record. SO, it came down to paying this WRONG ticket $500 or losing my chance to go to traffic school and pay $1800 in insurance. Which would you do?
I'd like to take it back to court now that it's safe, but I dont know if you can. I know that light dispenses WRONG tickets all the time. One of the cameras is OK, but the claires st. one is always going off for no reason, then I've WATCHED people plow through it with no flash?
Yo Jesse, newsflash. YOu never came to a complete stop and you rolled through the light. You ran the red light, there is no such thing as a 2 or 3 second stop. Just because you broke the law, you gotta make up an excuse rather than just fess up to a mistake.....sheesh.
Boby M

United States

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#24
Mar 16, 2009
 
An excellent use of technology to enforce the law with the limited number of patrol officers available in comparison to the thousands of signal controlled intersections and generating employment and revenue opportunities for the both the city, county and operating company! Too bad there are two camps of opponents. Those who hate the thought of being caught and cited by a photo machine and the police unions who argue they and only they should be out ticketing folks as they believe their job worth security worth will somehow be reduced or infringed upon by technology!
Choose advice carefully

Santa Cruz, CA

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#25
Mar 16, 2009
 
Hi all--

If you take Mr. Squirrel's advice and ignore the notice from the Court as insufficient notice, you will end up with a ticket worth the original fine plus $300, which will be added right before they send it to a collection agency.
Boby M

United States

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#26
Mar 16, 2009
 
James Anderson Merritt wrote:
The cameras aren't about safety, and, as the fines for being 1/10th of a second beyond the limit demonstrate, they aren't about justice, either. It's about keeping the cattle in line and milking them for cash to the fullest extent possible.
Enough is enough. The government is supposed to work for us, not us for them. For the next several election cycles, we need to do the following:
1. Do not vote for incumbents.
2. Where you have a choice in a partisan race, do not vote for the incumbent's opponent from the other major party, either.
3. Wherever possible, vote for independent and third-party candidates who have expressed (ideally, through a track record of deeds) respect for the US Constitution and the people, under whose authority it is the law of the land.
A few election cycles of this disinfectant regimen can sweep our seats of government clean, and install office-holders who are closer to being true civil servants than the pack of parasites who apparently rule us today. Then, we must keep track of what the new guys are up to and encourage them to stay in line. Rather than have the government watching US and holding US to account in a game of "gotcha" where they have all the advantage, we need to turn the tables.
No actually, the laws are in place to ensure safety first! Revenue generation is secondary but desired and needed under most circumstances. The fine is to ensure a sufficient minor punishment to ensure compliance and to cover allowable certain associated costs. The photo camera enforcement simply adds another tool for enforcement! Police officer salaries and benefits are expensive and limit the number of enforcement officers available for any government entity. There is virtually no practical way to afford a cop at every intersection and in every neighborhood to ensure enforcement of the traffic laws! For a right turn while facing a red light, the vehicle code requires the driver to stop prior to entering the intersection and then yield to all approaching traffic prior to making the right turn. It doesn’t say stop for a specific period of time. If you did not stop as in momentarily to cease motion, you didn't stop! If the camera shows your vehicle 1/10th of a second before the limit line when the light turned red, you were in violation of failing to stop for a red light prior to entering the intersection! What's the problem? Admit your mistake and take responsibility for your actions and error! You should have been slowing and preparing top stop based on your position on the highway approaching the signal controlled intersection when the light turned from green to yellow and if you had been driving at or near the posted speed limit you would have had sufficient time to safely stop for the red light! Traffic engineers are required to utilize specific parameters when setting posted speed limits and setting the timing of the lights! These traffic regulations and rules are in place to ensure the driving public can reasonably react to and drive safely upon the highways!

Since: Jan 09

San Leandro, CA

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#28
Mar 16, 2009
 
internets I haz it wrote:
where in the vehicle code does it say you must stop for 3 seconds when stopping before making a turn on red?
<quoted text>
EXACTLY. That's what I couldn't find, and what I feel I should go back to court for. But I paid it out of FEAR of my insurance wrongly going up for 3 years. See the predicament I was in? I was turning right on red. Stopped before the line, then carefully continued turning right...

flash! when i got the ticket, i assumed "this is an honest mistake, they will just clear it when I show them" but they got me on a fraction of a second. so first my violation was "running a red light" then when they saw I didnt' do that, they made this one up "well you didn't stop for 3 seconds, pay up"

the best part, is the paper ticket showed me in one shot sitting behind the white line. then 3 seconds after, I'm 5 feet past that spot, turning right.
The video shows me going so slow I'm surprised no one honked.

When I'm forced to use that signal now, I don't even turn. I'm sure it pisses people off, I'm sorry but that's an expensive right turn! I wait for it to be green, even though it's LEGAL to turn.

Since: Jan 09

San Leandro, CA

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#29
Mar 16, 2009
 
Get it striaght wrote:
<quoted text>
Yo Jesse, newsflash. YOu never came to a complete stop and you rolled through the light. You ran the red light, there is no such thing as a 2 or 3 second stop. Just because you broke the law, you gotta make up an excuse rather than just fess up to a mistake.....sheesh.
Haha, I'd fess up if we could find where it says that you must make a 2-3 second stop. I could use your help, can you cite the vehicle code? I really need that info, I'd like to get my 500 bucks back and I can't find where it says I have to stop for 3 seconds.

I stopped before the line, then proceeded, which is all I can find. Please, help me out.
ILLEGAL CAMERA

Concord, CA

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#30
Mar 16, 2009
 
Someone above wrote NO ONE gets out of the tickets at 41st Ave.
WRONG! I got my case dismissed!
The contract that the Capitola PD has with ATS is ILLEGAL. Capitola will not have to pay ATS the full rent if there aren't enough fines to cover the cost.
I BEAT Eller and he was visibly PISSED.
The judge said congratulations. You are the first person to have brought this up.
It goes against California Vehicle Code section 21455.5 subsection G
G "A contract between a governmental agency and a manufacturer or supplier of automated enforcement equipment may not include provision for the payment or compensation to the manufacturer or supplier based on the number of citations generated, or as a percentage of the revenue generated, as a result of the use of the equipment authorized under this section."
If you bring this up to the judge YOU WILL BEAT IT. I DID!
ILLEGAL CAMERA

Concord, CA

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#31
Mar 16, 2009
 
Reposting since it took out my formatting. I don't want anyone to miss this.. GET OUT OF YOUR TICKET.

Someone above wrote NO ONE gets out of the tickets at 41st Ave.
WRONG! I got my case dismissed!

The contract that the Capitola PD has with ATS is ILLEGAL. Capitola will not have to pay ATS the full rent if there aren't enough fines to cover the cost.

I BEAT Eller and he was visibly angry.

The judge said congratulations. You are the first person to have brought this up.

It goes against California Vehicle Code section 21455.5 subsection G

G "A contract between a governmental agency and a manufacturer or supplier of automated enforcement equipment may not include provision for the payment or compensation to the manufacturer or supplier based on the number of citations generated, or as a percentage of the revenue generated, as a result of the use of the equipment authorized under this section."
If you bring this up to the judge YOU WILL BEAT IT. I DID!
IndyDog

Watsonville, CA

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#32
Mar 16, 2009
 
Jesse Dresbach wrote:
<quoted text>
Haha, I'd fess up if we could find where it says that you must make a 2-3 second stop. I could use your help, can you cite the vehicle code? I really need that info, I'd like to get my 500 bucks back and I can't find where it says I have to stop for 3 seconds.
I stopped before the line, then proceeded, which is all I can find. Please, help me out.
I'm really surprised that no one has taken out their frustration on those cameras and either rammed them with a beater truck late at night, or hooked up a chain or heavy cable to the post and yanked them down. Or, if we dont want to be quite so vandalistic, we could go low tech. How about a big gob of wet toilet paper flung onto the lens of the camera? It's not that high that you can't reach it. A total eighth grade tactic we used to do to make a mess on the ceiling of the bathrooms in junior high. It would stop the ticket revenue generation, although temporary, until they get someone to scrape off the lens. Fight the power!!!
Boulder Bob

Sunnyvale, CA

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#33
Mar 16, 2009
 
ILLEGAL CAMERA wrote:
Someone above wrote NO ONE gets out of the tickets at 41st Ave.
WRONG! I got my case dismissed!
The contract that the Capitola PD has with ATS is ILLEGAL. Capitola will not have to pay ATS the full rent if there aren't enough fines to cover the cost.
I BEAT Eller and he was visibly ****.
The judge said congratulations. You are the first person to have brought this up.
This is great! What did you have to do to obtain a copy of the contract? I wonder if any Capitola citizens care that their city management does business illegally?
internets I haz it

El Cerrito, CA

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#34
Mar 16, 2009
 
I have no illusion that the cameras are there to generate revenue. I haven;t been to the mall ever since the cameras got installed.

I am contemplating place a sicker on the back on my car that says "I don't make right turns on red lights due to red light cameras".
Jesse Dresbach wrote:
<quoted text>
EXACTLY. That's what I couldn't find, and what I feel I should go back to court for. But I paid it out of FEAR of my insurance wrongly going up for 3 years. See the predicament I was in? I was turning right on red. Stopped before the line, then carefully continued turning right...
flash! when i got the ticket, i assumed "this is an honest mistake, they will just clear it when I show them" but they got me on a fraction of a second. so first my violation was "running a red light" then when they saw I didnt' do that, they made this one up "well you didn't stop for 3 seconds, pay up"
the best part, is the paper ticket showed me in one shot sitting behind the white line. then 3 seconds after, I'm 5 feet past that spot, turning right.
The video shows me going so slow I'm surprised no one honked.
When I'm forced to use that signal now, I don't even turn. I'm sure it pisses people off, I'm sorry but that's an expensive right turn! I wait for it to be green, even though it's LEGAL to turn.
do the math

San Jose, CA

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#35
Mar 16, 2009
 
For the post that said to fight the ticket just to make a bump in the officers day...FYI

If the officer is "on duty" they go to court during their shift. If court is on their "off duty" day, or say they work nights, guess what? Mandatory four hours overtime pay. As an officer, I have no problem going to court on my day off and bilking tax payers out of free money. Keep fighting those tickets folks! You're paying for my vacations!
really

Berkeley, CA

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#36
Mar 16, 2009
 
I'm speechless.

And we wonder why California can never have a balanced budget.
do the math wrote:
For the post that said to fight the ticket just to make a bump in the officers day...FYI
If the officer is "on duty" they go to court during their shift. If court is on their "off duty" day, or say they work nights, guess what? Mandatory four hours overtime pay. As an officer, I have no problem going to court on my day off and bilking tax payers out of free money. Keep fighting those tickets folks! You're paying for my vacations!
Judy

San Jose, CA

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#37
Jun 16, 2009
 
I am quite confused and upset. Six months after the alleged red light violation I got a ticket. It showed a picture of me stopped at the red light. Then it shows a picture of me going through the red light. Made no sense to me at all. With my post menopausal brain, I couldn't remember 6 months back. A few weeks later a vague memory tripped in in which I remembered stopping, then the light turning green, my going through and then noticing while I was in the middle of the intersection that the light was red again. I was flagergasted and didn't know what to do. I didn't even know there was a camera until I got the ticket.
So< thought, well a picture is a picture so i paid the $411 and opted for traffic school. I wasn't sure if I was eligible in that it was my second ticket in 20 years, but the second in the last, I didn't know how many months. I pressed the buttons for traffic school and it went through. I paid the extra money for traffic school. It took months for me to complete an endless on line traffic school. First I failed the final exam because I didn't know what the favorite movies and foods were for some Snoopy type character they called Chili in the traffic school program, so I had to quickly go back through the entire program to find Chili's foods. I had to do it in 45 minute or I didn't know what. Carpel Tunnel Syndrome and all I got through it. I got my congratulations from them etc. One week later I got an E mail saying that I didn't qualify for Traffic School.

Any ideas about this anyone? What was the deal with that light? Should'nt I have been notified that I wasn't eligible. I guess I am the sinner, but isn't my time and money valued. I don't even know what happened to my payment for the ticket.

I guess I'm going to court. What do I have to loose?
umm

Watsonville, CA

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#38
Jun 17, 2009
 
Judy wrote:
I am quite confused and upset. Six months after the alleged red light violation I got a ticket. It showed a picture of me stopped at the red light. Then it shows a picture of me going through the red light. Made no sense to me at all. With my post menopausal brain, I couldn't remember 6 months back. A few weeks later a vague memory tripped in in which I remembered stopping, then the light turning green, my going through and then noticing while I was in the middle of the intersection that the light was red again. I was flagergasted and didn't know what to do. I didn't even know there was a camera until I got the ticket.
So< thought, well a picture is a picture so i paid the $411 and opted for traffic school. I wasn't sure if I was eligible in that it was my second ticket in 20 years, but the second in the last, I didn't know how many months. I pressed the buttons for traffic school and it went through. I paid the extra money for traffic school. It took months for me to complete an endless on line traffic school. First I failed the final exam because I didn't know what the favorite movies and foods were for some Snoopy type character they called Chili in the traffic school program, so I had to quickly go back through the entire program to find Chili's foods. I had to do it in 45 minute or I didn't know what. Carpel Tunnel Syndrome and all I got through it. I got my congratulations from them etc. One week later I got an E mail saying that I didn't qualify for Traffic School.
Any ideas about this anyone? What was the deal with that light? Should'nt I have been notified that I wasn't eligible. I guess I am the sinner, but isn't my time and money valued. I don't even know what happened to my payment for the ticket.
I guess I'm going to court. What do I have to loose?
Go to court and set trial. If it's the cameras on 41st the judge can look up the video of your alleged violation and determine if it was infact a violation. Try calling the agency that issued the ticket (Capitola PD) they may be able to view it for you as well and if it was not a violation, ie your stopped before turning on a red, then they can make a motion to dismiss the ticket for you. If it was a violation (if you did not stop to turn, or went straight through the intersection on a red) you can take a chance that the police will not show, but that is highly unlikely since it is one officer that handles all the automatic tickets and he shows up every time.
Erica

Jamaica Plain, MA

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#39
Jul 1, 2009
 
The easiest solution is to boycott the Capitola Mall. When business goes down, the store owners will tell the police to turn off the camera.

I'm not for running red lights, but such cameras are a major violation of our civil liberties.

If we accept the idea of automate law-enforcement cameras for speed, red lights and seat belts, the potential for "mission creep" is frightening. It won't be in just our cars--technology exists already which can search a pic of our face in a database. How about cameras outside buildings to make sure we don't smoke within ten feet of a doorway? Cameras in parks to make sure we curb our dogs? Maybe the next step is to ticket obese people if the cameras observe them entering donut or fast-food shops?

We need to rebel now to prevent a society in which our every move is on display for government cameras. If you think I'm nuts, take a look at Great Britain. Already, the government has in place a system where the location of every car at every minute of the day can be pinpointed. There is also widespread use of cameras in London--so you never know when someone is watching. It's frightening, and I am hesitant to return to London, and if do I'll wear a really fun costume to entertain the watchers.
Ben Lomondite

Salt Lake City, UT

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#41
Oct 31, 2009
 
[[ There is a safety issue because other drivers are expecting you to stop and if you don't, they may have to stop suddenly and then get rear-ended.]]

That makes loads of sense.... If "I don't stop" then "they must stop" ???? What?
soco

Reseda, CA

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#42
Oct 31, 2009
 
What irritates me is these companies and cities like Capitola state these cameras are about safety.
Its a total lie, its about the money, and nothing else. Study after study show RLC's increase accident rates, up to 300%.

http://blog.motorists.org/red-light-cameras-i...

Capitola either knows this and is negligent towards our safety, or they don't know, in which case they are derelict in placing an enforcement system in place that makes the public less safe in total contradiction to government's primary duty, our safety.
Just another revenue enhancement tool on the backs of taxpayers. Be an interesting lawsuit.
Ben Lomondite

Salt Lake City, UT

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#43
Nov 1, 2009
 
"A second appellate ruling has struck down a California city's red light camera program as illegal"....

http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/29/2918.asp
Jonathan Jupp

Bern, Switzerland

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#44
Nov 1, 2009
 
Notice at the end of the report where it states "A 2005 study by the Federal Highway Safety Administration found that after installation of red-light cameras, right-angle or T-bone crashes dropped 28 percent".

This is clearly not the case in Capitola where there is no cross-traffic (there's no feeder road on the other side). If Capitola were really concerned about red light running, why is this setup in front of the mall and not a block away at 41st Ave and Capitola Road, where there IS a chance of a T-bone type crash.

It's pretty obvious this is about money and not safety. I agree about just avoiding to the Capitola Mall.

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