On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in Car Accidents on Thursday, February 27, 2014.
One Ohio village has justified its use of speeding cameras by stating that their installation is driven by a compelling interest for the public’s safety.
The many motorists who have been snapshot targets of the cameras and subsequently been forced to pay fines for speeding — reportedly more than 10,000 drivers — would likely agree in unison that the only interest served is the town’s, specifically its coffers.
It certainly does seem notable that the village of New Miami, abode of only about 2,200 residents, has taken in more than $1 million from ticketed drivers.
Officials in New Miami and many other Ohio locales have consistently argued that the cameras they deploy are deterrents that curb speeding and car accidents. Critics of the cameras say they are intended as nothing more than revenue makers and that they are difficult to challenge.
A state judge weighed in on the cameras with a ruling issued just last week, ordering New Miami to cease using them. In doing so, he openly questioned their fairness, noting that the administrative system for assessing fines and collecting payments circumvents court review and favors the village and police department.
“The court has great concerns about due process in this case,” the judge noted.
Other Ohio courts also have evident concerns, with additional cities and villages in the state coming under judicial fire for their use of cameras. The Ohio Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a case and issue a ruling later this year concerning a camera challenge.
As for ticketed New Miami drivers who paid fines, it is conceivable that they could get their money back. The judge in the case has approved class action status, meaning that every affected motorist could become a party in a lawsuit against the village.
Source: Fox News, “Judge deals blow to Ohio village’s use of speeding traffic cameras,” Associated Press, Feb 26, 2014