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LarryDallas

A few questions on the red light camera tickets

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Search reveals locations so I thought I'd ask someone who has been through it already if such a person is on HAIF.

My 68 yr old dad got a ticket for making an illegal right turn on a red light. I think he slowed down to under 5 mph and wrote the court a small memo about how that is how people drive in the real world and he thinks the ticket is unfair when a policeman in a squad car would not pull someone over for doing that. Anyway, his appeal was denied and they still want $75 OR he has to pay $10 file for another appeal where he will be able to make his case to a judge in person.

He is pretty much outraged that it costs $10 to see someone who is supposed to be working for the public to begin with.

KTRK recently did a story where a similar case was thrown out when the defendant had 3 of these tickets against her.

http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/story?section=...&id=6152611

Anyway, he is not a lawyer by profession so he is willing to pay up to even $150 (twice what the ticket was for) to have it thrown out. Better the money go to someone who is doing something to help people being swindled out of money than the criminal govt. that is making deals with private companies to raise cash and talk about safety when the cameras have done nothing to change accident stats.; he says.

He is retired and has tons of free time to play games with them if they want to.

Questions 1&2 are: Who is a good lawyer that takes red light camera cases and wins? What can this cost?

Question 3: What will happend if he just does not pay?

He owns his house outright, his cars are all paid for, he does not use credit cards, and he will not be buying another house/car on payments ever, etc....in other words a good credit report is meaningless to him. He canceled his last credit card the week he retired about 8 years ago and never looked back.

Someone told me the ticket is a matter of civil court so if you do not pay they just had it over to a collection agency which will mean they will call him and send letters to make him settle. He does not pick up his phone 95% of the time anyway....when I call I have to say "dad....it's me if you are there pickup". If it was a criminal offense then they could issue a warrant for arrest and you could go to jail next time a cop pulls you over for a moving violation.

What would you suggest?

He's really been pissed off at the municipal courts since 2001 when he got his first ticket after 35 years because a cop was behind him on the freeway and kept trying to go around but couldn't pass so he flashed his lights. Dad thought he was getting pulled over but the cop says he wanted him to move aside to let him pass. Anyway, dad slowed down....the cop was still trapped behind his car so when dad pulled over to the side of the highway the cop pulled over too and gave him a ticket for failure to pull over fast enough or something like that. The cop himself said he wanted to pass but then said the ticket was for not pulling over....kinda contradicts itself there. Dad said he could not get over fast cause traffic was heavy.

It cost him something like $125 plus defensive driving.

Anyway...since then he's been pissed at the court and does not want them to get a cent of his money.

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Search reveals locations so I thought I'd ask someone who has been through it already if such a person is on HAIF.

My 68 yr old dad got a ticket for making an illegal right turn on a red light. I think he slowed down to under 5 mph and wrote the court a small memo about how that is how people drive in the real world and he thinks the ticket is unfair when a policeman in a squad car would not pull someone over for doing that. Anyway, his appeal was denied and they still want $75 OR he has to pay $10 file for another appeal where he will be able to make his case to a judge in person.

He is pretty much outraged that it costs $10 to see someone who is supposed to be working for the public to begin with.

KTRK recently did a story where a similar case was thrown out when the defendant had 3 of these tickets against her.

http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/story?section=...&id=6152611

Anyway, he is not a lawyer by profession so he is willing to pay up to even $150 (twice what the ticket was for) to have it thrown out. Better the money go to someone who is doing something to help people being swindled out of money than the criminal govt. that is making deals with private companies to raise cash and talk about safety when the cameras have done nothing to change accident stats.; he says.

He is retired and has tons of free time to play games with them if they want to.

Questions 1&2 are: Who is a good lawyer that takes red light camera cases and wins? What can this cost?

Question 3: What will happend if he just does not pay?

He owns his house outright, his cars are all paid for, he does not use credit cards, and he will not be buying another house/car on payments ever, etc....in other words a good credit report is meaningless to him. He canceled his last credit card the week he retired about 8 years ago and never looked back.

Someone told me the ticket is a matter of civil court so if you do not pay they just had it over to a collection agency which will mean they will call him and send letters to make him settle. He does not pick up his phone 95% of the time anyway....when I call I have to say "dad....it's me if you are there pickup". If it was a criminal offense then they could issue a warrant for arrest and you could go to jail next time a cop pulls you over for a moving violation.

What would you suggest?

He's really been pissed off at the municipal courts since 2001 when he got his first ticket after 35 years because a cop was behind him on the freeway and kept trying to go around but couldn't pass so he flashed his lights. Dad thought he was getting pulled over but the cop says he wanted him to move aside to let him pass. Anyway, dad slowed down....the cop was still trapped behind his car so when dad pulled over to the side of the highway the cop pulled over too and gave him a ticket for failure to pull over fast enough or something like that. The cop himself said he wanted to pass but then said the ticket was for not pulling over....kinda contradicts itself there. Dad said he could not get over fast cause traffic was heavy.

It cost him something like $125 plus defensive driving.

Anyway...since then he's been pissed at the court and does not want them to get a cent of his money.

I don't know much about this but I am sure they don't issue warrants for not paying. Kind of like parking tickets.

I think if he pays the ten bucks and request trial by jury they will throw the case out. I'd never get a red light ticket but I get speeding tickets about once a year. I just request trial by jury, which you can do by mail in Houston, and case closed because cops don't show up. I've not paid a penny to them.

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I don't know much about this but I am sure they don't issue warrants for not paying. Kind of like parking tickets.

I think if he pays the ten bucks and request trial by jury they will throw the case out. I'd never get a red light ticket but I get speeding tickets about once a year. I just request trial by jury, which you can do by mail in Houston, and case closed because cops don't show up. I've not paid a penny to them.

I admire your father! The man is on the right track and should pay the $10.00 and see the judge. I would be very surprised if a real judge did more than dismiss the ticket. I paid my camera ticket, but only because I could not have been more guilty of running a red light...I wish your old man the best luck, and as always:

FIGHT THE POWER

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The law clearly states that you must stop on red. Making a right turn does not mean you can coast through. The fact that others do it doesnt make it right.

Fight the ticket, I always recommend fighting tickets, however in this case your father is guilty. Just because he was found guilty via a machine instead of by human eyes does not make him any less guilty. Not liking the court system does not make him less guilty.

You are also correct, the most they can do is try to collect a debt from your father. Although it could tie up his estate settlement when he passes, but thats not a reason to pay the ticket.

I remember when I was 16 and learning to drive, I coasted through a red when making a right turn and my father made me stop the car and he screamed at me that if I ever did that again, I wouldnt drive for a month. At the time I had no idea why he was so furious, growing up I saw the same thing as you mentioned. I assumed that since everyone else did it, it was ok. He made sure I realized it was not OK.

To this day, when I come to a red light intending to make a right, I still remember him yelling at me.

Tell your father to stop on red and avoid this in the future.

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Actually, police will give tickets if they see you not stopping before a right turn on red. Southside Place must get ahlf their revenue from people who do this at Stella Link and Bellaire. I always stop before turning on red, having seen lots of folks get stopped for coasting.

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Search reveals locations so I thought I'd ask someone who has been through it already if such a person is on HAIF.

My 68 yr old dad got a ticket for making an illegal right turn on a red light. I think he slowed down to under 5 mph and wrote the court a small memo about how that is how people drive in the real world and he thinks the ticket is unfair when a policeman in a squad car would not pull someone over for doing that. Anyway, his appeal was denied and they still want $75 OR he has to pay $10 file for another appeal where he will be able to make his case to a judge in person.

He is pretty much outraged that it costs $10 to see someone who is supposed to be working for the public to begin with.

KTRK recently did a story where a similar case was thrown out when the defendant had 3 of these tickets against her.

http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/story?section=...&id=6152611

Anyway, he is not a lawyer by profession so he is willing to pay up to even $150 (twice what the ticket was for) to have it thrown out. Better the money go to someone who is doing something to help people being swindled out of money than the criminal govt. that is making deals with private companies to raise cash and talk about safety when the cameras have done nothing to change accident stats.; he says.

He is retired and has tons of free time to play games with them if they want to.

Questions 1&2 are: Who is a good lawyer that takes red light camera cases and wins? What can this cost?

Question 3: What will happend if he just does not pay?

He owns his house outright, his cars are all paid for, he does not use credit cards, and he will not be buying another house/car on payments ever, etc....in other words a good credit report is meaningless to him. He canceled his last credit card the week he retired about 8 years ago and never looked back.

Someone told me the ticket is a matter of civil court so if you do not pay they just had it over to a collection agency which will mean they will call him and send letters to make him settle. He does not pick up his phone 95% of the time anyway....when I call I have to say "dad....it's me if you are there pickup". If it was a criminal offense then they could issue a warrant for arrest and you could go to jail next time a cop pulls you over for a moving violation.

What would you suggest?

He's really been pissed off at the municipal courts since 2001 when he got his first ticket after 35 years because a cop was behind him on the freeway and kept trying to go around but couldn't pass so he flashed his lights. Dad thought he was getting pulled over but the cop says he wanted him to move aside to let him pass. Anyway, dad slowed down....the cop was still trapped behind his car so when dad pulled over to the side of the highway the cop pulled over too and gave him a ticket for failure to pull over fast enough or something like that. The cop himself said he wanted to pass but then said the ticket was for not pulling over....kinda contradicts itself there. Dad said he could not get over fast cause traffic was heavy.

It cost him something like $125 plus defensive driving.

Anyway...since then he's been pissed at the court and does not want them to get a cent of his money.

Making a right turn at a red light without coming to a complete stop is against the law. I'm not saying he shouldn't fight it but he did in fact break the law if he didn't stop. It doesn't matter if everyone else does it... if it's against the law and you do it you are breaking the law.

On a related note, I totally failed my first drivers test when I was 16 for doing just that... I turned right at a red light w/o stopping completely... for some reason I thought you didn't have to stop completely.... turns out you do. :blush: ha ha ha

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Making a right turn at a red light without coming to a complete stop is against the law. I'm not saying he shouldn't fight it but he did in fact break the law if he didn't stop. It doesn't matter if everyone else does it... if it's against the law and you do it you are breaking the law.

On a related note, I totally failed my first drivers test when I was 16 for doing just that... I turned right at a red light w/o stopping completely... for some reason I thought you didn't have to stop completely.... turns out you do. :blush: ha ha ha

This is correct. In certain parts of town (you know where they are), nitpicky violations such as this provide the reason for the cop to stop the driver. They then use the stop to develop an excuse to search the car. When drugs are found, off to the hoosegow you go. Your old man is po'd about 75 bucks. Think how mad he'd be if that rolling stop got him 2 years in prison!

If he wants to hire a lawyer, tell him to call the one in the article, Randall Kallinen. He's a friend of mine, and a great guy. Be forewarned. Randall is president of the Houston chapter of the ACLU. If the ACLU upsets your dad more than the government does, he should probably call Paul Kubosh, another friend who is fighting these camera tickets.

Phone numbers are in the book for both.

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I do not consider this nit picky. If a person coasts through a red light making a right turn and somehow doesnt see a car traveling at 60mph that is in their direct path, that is a serious accident, and the car traveling 60mph will sustain the more severe injuries.

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I think having to pay $10 for a trial is the sad part. What ever happened to having the "right" to a trial by one's peers. I guess that's only for people with money. Not that $10 is a lot of cash, but it's the principle.

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How do you know whether you have a red-light camera ticket ? I mean, if its lost in the mail or something, is there a number you can call / website you can check whether there are any pending red-light tickets against you ? Also, usually, how many days would it take for the mail to show up ?

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How does the camera tell if you've come to a complete stop? How does it know if you're just rolling up to get a better look at the traffic?

Today I noticed a bunch of glass and a hubcap in the middle of one of the monitored intersections. That camera's doing a lot of good :lol:

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Today I noticed a bunch of glass and a hubcap in the middle of one of the monitored intersections. That camera's doing a lot of good :lol:

43,000 people die in auto accidents every year. Those seat belts and airbags are doing a lot of good. :rolleyes:

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Today I noticed a bunch of glass and a hubcap in the middle of one of the monitored intersections. That camera's doing a lot of good :lol:

Prolly from a rear-ender caused by someone slamming on their brakes when the light turned yellow.

Edited by marmer

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Prolly from a rear-ender caused by someone slamming on their brakes when the light turned yellow.

OH MY GOODNESS, THIS HAPPENED TO ME THIS MORNING!!!!!! This is so ironic because I meant to post about this here when I got to work this morning but because of work, I couldn't ;) . Anyway, a SUV slammed on his breaks when the light turned yellow and all I could do was yell NOOOOOO at the top of my lungs. When the light actually turned red, we were already at a complete stop. Thank God I had enough room to stop without rear-ending him. UGHHHHHHH!

For every positive about those cameras, there is a negative. Besides, the streets are apparently no safer because the city is making revenue from the cameras which means people are still running red lights. This was all about money.

OK, I'm done. :P

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OH MY GOODNESS, THIS HAPPENED TO ME THIS MORNING!!!!!! This is so ironic because I meant to post about this here when I got to work this morning but because of work, I couldn't ;) . Anyway, a SUV slammed on his breaks when the light turned yellow and all I could do was yell NOOOOOO at the top of my lungs. When the light actually turned red, we were already at a complete stop. Thank God I had enough room to stop without rear-ending him. UGHHHHHHH!

For every positive about those cameras, there is a negative. Besides, the streets are apparently no safer because the city is making revenue from the cameras which means people are still running red lights. This was all about money.

OK, I'm done. :P

I wonder how many people issued tickets by way of the red light cameras were also involved in an accident at the same time.

Has anyone seen stats on weather or not they actually work in reducing accidents. Do you believe the stats?

CyKat

Edited by CyKat

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Has anyone seen stats on weather or not they actually work in reducing accidents.

Yes. Some places they work, some places they don't. Like everything else, context is essential.

Do you believe the stats?

Yes.

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Has anyone seen stats on weather or not they actually work in reducing accidents. Do you believe the stats?

Valid arguments can be made that lengthening the yellow light times at such intersections is much more effective in preventing accidents. But longer yellows don't bring in any money.

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Valid arguments can be made that lengthening the yellow light times at such intersections is much more effective in preventing accidents.

True, but the effect can be temporary as people get used to the longer yellow time.

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I seem to remember some "scandals" when the tech was first introduced about the camera companies "recommending" shortened yellow time to "create" more revenue. If I have time I'll try to come up with some harder evidence than my admittedly Swiss-cheese-esque memory.

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A total of twenty-one camera intersections in Dallas have yellow times below TxDOT's bare minimum recommended amount. The Texas Transportation Institute study also found that shorter yellows generate a 110 percent jump in the number of tickets, but at the cost of safety. Increasing the yellow one second above the recommended minimum cut crashes by 40 percent.

http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/20/2068.asp

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A total of twenty-one camera intersections in Dallas have yellow times below TxDOT's bare minimum recommended amount. The Texas Transportation Institute study also found that shorter yellows generate a 110 percent jump in the number of tickets, but at the cost of safety. Increasing the yellow one second above the recommended minimum cut crashes by 40 percent.

Yeah, this might be one example of what I was thinking of that I read about recently. That, and I think there was a slew of letters to the editor about yellow light times/red light cameras to the Chron after they started sending out tickets to people after the trial period was over. Was probably in response to an editorial.

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