Thursday, September 3, 2009

Montgomery County Speed Cameras Issuing Duplicate Tickets

The Montgomery County Gazette has reported that speed cameras located in Chevy Chase Village have issued duplicate citations with incorrect dates. The dates on images citations issued on 3/8 (March) were transposed as 8/3, saved until August, and a duplicate set of citations issued months later. This occurred with at least 40 citations. 9 motorists had already paid the invalid tickets by the time some citizens brought this to the attention of the Village police.

Local Police described this as "human error", as they have in every other case where speed cameras have made errors.

StopBigBrotherMD.org had in the past received reports of duplicate citations being issued with incorrect times. When we inquired of county officials about this they replied that this had not occurred.

The date and time of a violation would be critical to the defense of anyone who needed to challenge a citation, however local officials claim that these types of error rrors on these citations are rare. The county is currently being sued over the fact that they pay a private contractor a 40% cut of every ticket. Many believe that arrangement violates state law and creates an incentive for the contractor to do whatever they can to maximize the number of tickets issued, or possibly even to allow the use of faulty equipment or procedures which could result in innocent people being ticketed. "We're finding there's a whole series of errors in the setup and the procedures," the Gazette quoted William F. Askinazi of Germantown, an attorney in the lawsuit.