Speed Trap Hunter Forum: Best Radar Detectors, Laser Jammers, Laser Detectors, Speed Cameras Forum  

Go Back   Speed Trap Hunter Forum: Best Radar Detectors, Laser Jammers, Laser Detectors, Speed Cameras Forum > Speed Trap & Traffic Enforcement > Economics & Politics
Radar Detectors Forum Logon:


Economics & Politics Discussion of the economic and political market driving factors of automated enforcement technology.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 2009-01-30
NMA Reporter NMA Reporter is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: 2008 Feb
Posts: 125
NMA Reporter is on a distinguished road
Exclamation California Appellate Court Publishes Anti-Camera Decision

Article: California Appellate Court Publishes Anti-Camera Decision

California Superior CourtCities in California could face a class action lawsuit forcing the refund of thousands of illegally issued red light camera fines following the publication earlier this month of an appellate decision in favor of a local motorist. The California Superior Court's Appellate Division canceled a photo ticket issued to Orange County resident Thomas Fischetti because the city of Santa Ana failed to provide a thirty-day warning period before issuing tickets at each intersection equipped with a red light camera. Santa Ana, with the support of a trial judge, claimed that it was good enough to have a thirty-day warning period at a single intersection in the city.

"The trial court's determination that the city complied with Section 21455.5(b) is inconsistent with the structure and purpose of the statute as a whole," Appellate Division Judge Stephen L. Perk decided. "From the perspective of the motorists for whom the statutory requirements were intended to provide protection, it would not make sense for the geographic scope of the thirty-day warning period to be determined arbitrarily by the size of the municipality operating the automated enforcement system."

This was not the first time that the courts had decided this issue in Fischetti's favor. In 2005, the California Supreme Court upheld a previous appellate division decision finding Fischetti not guilty because the city of Costa Mesa, like Santa Ana, failed to provide a thirty-day warning period at each intersection with a red light camera (read opinion). Although final, that decision could not be used as a precedent in California because Fischetti, who represented himself in court, did not realize that courts can withhold publication of decisions, especially when no request for publication was made. Three years later, he would not repeat that mistake.

On February 6, 2008, a red light camera claimed that Fischetti's 1993 Lexus entered the intersection of Pullman and Dyer in Santa Ana a split-second after the light had turned red. Fischetti called and spoke with Laura Rossini, Deputy City Attorney of Santa Ana, to explain that the city was in violation of the 2005 Fischetti decision. He was shocked at the city's attitude toward the law.

"She paid little homage to the appellate decision requiring a grace period in my Costa Mesa case," Fischetti told TheNewspaper. "It was like, despite the logical construction of the opinion, the previous decision was meaningless. At that point I felt I needed to finish what I intended to do in Costa Mesa."

Even Fischetti with his two victories was not the only individual to win on this question. Both the city of Santa Ana and Court Commissioner Glenn Mondo, who found Fischetti guilty in 2008, had been overturned on this very point. On August 28, 2008, the appellate division entered an identical ruling declaring another motorist's $366 fine in Santa Ana invalid because of the lack of a warning period. The decision was not published.

The significance of publication is clear from the 2005 pleas of the California League of Cities to overturn the Costa Mesa decision. The League told the state supreme court that the decision, if allowed to stand, meant trouble for the sixty-six California cities that used red light cameras at the time. None of them provided the warning period prescribed by the law.

"The respondent court's legal interpretation of the statute creates a question of first impression and implicates a factual situation likely to be the subject of persistent litigation in the future by all cities with automated enforcement systems," Santa Ana's Assistant City Attorney Paula Coleman wrote on behalf of the League of California Cities in March 2005. "The impact on cities and the courts with respect to ticket appeals and potential refunds could be enormous should respondent court's analysis be allowed to stand and other courts follow suit."

The California Supreme Court upheld the 2005 Fischetti decision, the wording of which is substantially identical to the latest ruling which is available in a 1mb PDF file at the source link below. Source
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
Reply



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
California Appellate Court Slams Sacramento Red Light Camera Program NMA Reporter Economics & Politics 0 2009-03-15 22:06
California Appeals Court Rejects Attempt to Unpublish Red Light Camera Decision NMA Reporter Economics & Politics 0 2009-02-14 14:07
California Appellate Court Overturns Conviction for Running a Green Light NMA Reporter Economics & Politics 0 2009-01-21 14:07
Red Light Camera and Speed Camera CrimeLine NMA Reporter Economics & Politics 0 2009-01-07 22:11
California Appellate Court Declares Red Light Camera Contracts Illegal NMA Reporter Economics & Politics 0 2008-12-12 15:57


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 16:41.


©2019 SpeedTrapHunter