In the past, a police officer would have to see you run a red light before you were ticketed. With new technology, a police officer does not have to be present. Now, traffic cameras keep watch at traffic lights. If your vehicle crosses over a certain area when there is a red light, a mechanism is triggered and a traffic camera records an image of you, your vehicle and the front license plate. You’ll receive a ticket for the traffic infraction in a few days via postal mail. However, since no physical person was present to ticket you, you may be able to use a few different methods to beat the red light ticket.
Getting The Photos
The first step that you can take to fight this type of ticket is to get the photographs. In some states, you’ll receive them through the mail. However, you may live in a state where you need to request them. This can be done by going online and searching for the city where you received the ticket along with the keywords “red light ticket.” Most websites will list an area that handles photo enforcement infractions. You may need to fill out the appropriate paperwork to obtain the images.
Once you get the photos, you will need to examine them to see if there are any blurry areas. Does the driver of the vehicle look like you? Is a license plate number on the car clearly visible?
In 2003, Senator Alex Mooney from the state of Maryland received a traffic camera ticket for running a red light. He fought the ticket and won since the ticket showed that a car thief was the person driving his automobile. You never know who might take your car out for a joy ride and cause an infraction with your automobile.
Properly Working Device
Another way that you can beat a red light ticket is by making sure that the device was working properly when it snapped the image of your car. When you go to trial, the prosecution for the city that is imposing a fine must prove that the camera was fully functional. In addition, the representative for the city must also be present with images from the camera. The images must show the driver and the license plate of the vehicle. If no one is there to authenticate the photo, you can have the images excluded and win the case.
Legal Right-Hand Turns On Red
In some situations where a person has been making a legal right-hand turn during a red light, a camera has taken a photo of their car when they entered the intersection and turned to the right. If you are involved in this type of scenario, you can fight your ticket if you can prove that you came to a complete stop before you proceeded into the intersection.
If you are going to contest this type of ticket with this defense, it’s advisable to go to that intersection and take some pictures that help prove your case.
Jim Treebold is a North Carolina based writer. He lives by the mantra of “Learn 1 new thing each day”! Jim loves to write, read, pedal around on his electric bike and dream of big things. Drop him a line if you like his writing, he loves hearing from his readers!