ELMWOOD PLACE, OH (FOX19) - The Village of Elmwood Place has collected over $1.75 million from people caught speeding since the installment of speed cameras in September. Tens of thousands of tickets have been issued. Drivers caught speeding by the robotic cameras, which are usually on 24 hours a day, are charged $105 for a ticket initially.
If a person contests the ticket, another $25 is tacked onto their bill.
Attorney Mike Allen, who is also FOX19's Legal Analyst, was in court on Wednesday suing the village and trying to block its use of the cameras.
Allen stated that they are not accurate and should not be used.
"What we heard today, coupled with our affidavits, coupled with our legal arguments, we think gives the judge... what he needs to do is shut this thing down," said Allen. "We had testimony from a pastor who said his parishioners don't want to come to church anymore because of the cameras. We had testimony from residents who don't want it."
However, the village's Chief of Police sees it differently.
When asked what he disagreed with about what he heard in court, he said, "I disagree that we're here. If you want to get to the long and short of it. We're just simply trying to keep our community safe, and it seems like we're getting penalized for it... But we'll see what the judge says." He also added, "You can't dispute the fact that the speeding has dropped. We went from over 9% of our daily commuters in town who were speeding, down to under 1%, so I'd say that's a large number. It makes our community safer for the kids and pedestrians."
Here are arguments presented by both sides in court:
Opponents of robo-cameras:
- Ordinance not properly posted
- Tickets issued to registered owner of vehicle and not the actual driver
- Law says hearing must happened within 20 days of ticket
- Fail to pay or contest ticket is an admission of guilt
- Spouses forced to testify against each other
- Signs are displayed improperly
- Cameras are only calibrated once a year
Proponents of robo-cameras:
- Camera's self-calibrate twice a day
- Same type calibration of hand-held radar gun
- If unit fails calibration it shuts down automatically
- Signs are displayed correctly
- Officers review citations before they are mailed
- Dramatic drop in speeding in village