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Fighting Red Light Camera Violation Tickets

Posted By Jim On 08/07/2006 @ 7:04 pm In Cars,Government,Personal Finance | 49 Comments

I was caught running a red light by a red light camera in downtown Baltimore three weeks ago (the notice came in the mail last week) and did a little searching online to see whether I had much of a chance contesting it. The reality is that I ran it because I didn’t want to slam on the breaks to stop myself and because I thought I could make it, in actuality I didn’t make it and am entirely guilty. Even though I was guilty, I still wanted to see what my options were since the ticket was going to cost me $75 (no points, so no insurance ramifications) and I figured that warranted at least a little bit of digging with Google for potential solutions.

(In the end, I paid the $75.)

The best traffic ticket information website out there has to be Ticket Assassin [3], their red light ticket section [4] has all sorts of good information worth reading and where I did most of my research. The only downside is that the site is focused on California residents and residents of other states can only use this as a frame of reference. For information about the red light camera program in Baltimore, check out the City of Baltimore red light camear page [5]. I think Ticket Assassin gives you a good idea of the sort of red tape you’ll have to go through, in any state, before you’ll be let off the hook.

The reason I didn’t contest the red light ticket was because I felt my time was worth more than the $75 fine. I didn’t want to contest the ticket and then have to spend all the time (a few hours) and gas (I’d have to drive downtown, likely in the middle of the day) it would take to go to the courthouse and try to conjure up some excuse as to why I shouldn’t get the ticket. And, if I failed, then the ticket would be $100 + court fees, adding insult to perceived injury. In the end, it’s wasn’t worth it to me.

For those of you who think I should’ve contested it out of principle… sorry, I just don’t feel that the use of red light cameras is such an injustice. Plus, I didn’t want to pay an extra $25+ considering I was absolutely guilty.


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[2] Email: mailto:?subject=http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/fighting-red-light-camera-violation-tickets.html

[3] Ticket Assassin: http://www.ticketassassin.com/

[4] red light ticket section: http://www.ticketassassin.com/autoenf_toc.html

[5] City of Baltimore red light camear page: http://www.ci.baltimore.md.us/government/transportation/redlightcameras.html

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