Monday, November 24, 2008

MoCo Speed Camera Cited Wrong Driver


A woman from Edgewater succeeded in having her speed camera citation thrown out in court after she proved that it was in fact not her car shown in the citation. Coleen Hanna was cited on August 6th for speeding in her BMW with tag number GZS 764 by a Montgomery County speed camera. The problem is that Ms Hanna doesn't own a BMW, she drives a Ford Focus. Hanna realized the 7 in the photo was not clear. She took it on her self to contact the MVA who determined that there was a BMD with tag number GZS 364.

She sent a letter explaining her situation, along with the documentation, hoping to avoid hoping to avoid having to travel to go to court and take a full day off of work, pay for gas to drive all the way to Silver Spring and pay for parking to challenge the $40 ticket. However her letter was ignored and she instead received a notice for a court hearing.

Unlike most drivers who would have considered it too much trouble to go to court, but Hanna thought "I would be saying I was in Montgomery County speeding that day, and that would be a lie." ** GOOD FOR YOU! **

After she presented her evidence and proved her innocence (um hello?!? who has the burden of proof?), the judge threw the ticket out.

Maurice R. Nelson, director of automatic traffic enforcement for the Safe Speed Program, said Hanna's ticket breezed through four separate "fail-safe" points where the error should have been caught. He claimed that the ticket was issued as a result of human error, not a flaw in the speed camera technology. Apparently the fact that a camera took a 3 and made it look like a 7 is human error. Whatever.