Friday, November 8, 2013

Court Rejects Optotraffic Lawsuit in Ohio

Maryland based speed camera company Optotraffic continues running into difficulties expanding their business into other states, as an article in TheNewspaper.com reports that a court in Ohio has rejected a complaint filed by the speed camera company against a local government.

Optotraffic's complaint stemmed from a prior court ruling where a Hamilton County Common Please judge ruled that the speed camera program in the town of Elmwood Place Ohio was illegal.  After  Maryland based Optotraffic failed to actually turn the cameras off in response to the court order, Judge Robert P. Ruehlman, he ordered the sheriff to confiscate the equipment.  Optotraffic filed the complaint in an attempt to reverse the decision and have the equipment returned.

In Maryland it has typically been motorists who have been denied legal recourse.  The Maryland high court has ruled that class action suits cannot be filed against a speed camera program because Maryland law does not permit the government to be sued and because paying speed camera tickets constitutes "the owners' admission that they were speeding" (even though the citations do not use those words and the owner may not even have been driving).  In Ohio however, the tables have been turned on the Maryland based speed camera company.  Optotraffic was forced to withdraw the complaint after the appellate court refused to intervene.  "Judge Ruehlman was the party that made the decision to have the sheriff confiscate the cameras," wrote Hamilton County Prosecuting Attorney Joseph Deters wrote. "However that does not help Optotraffic because they did not join Judge Ruehlman or the Hamilton County Common Pleas Court as a defendant, and the common pleas court is entitled to Eleventh Amendment immunity."

Read TheNewspaper.Com article