Automated Ticketing Machines (ATMs), more commonly known as speed or red light cameras, are popping up on street corners across the country. They’re sold to the public by greedy city councils and state legislatures as a way to reduce collisions or moving violations. What they’re really doing is lining corporate pockets and city treasuries with money from the fines, while making roads and intersections more dangerous.
ATMs, which are owned and operated by private corporations (often from out of state or foreign countries), capture images of the license plate of a vehicle supposedly running a red light or traveling over the speed limit. The owner of the vehicle later receives a ticket in the mail, even if he was not the one driving at the time.
Red light cameras bring in millions in revenue for the cities that use them as well as the corporations that own them. The corporation, instead of police, charges citizens with a crime. Victims of this “taxation by citation” scheme pay the fine to the camera company, and the spoils are then shared with the city.
The shocking disregard for due process is apparent, all to prey on motorists and line the pockets of the city and the camera companies. Millions of dollars are being extracted from U.S. motorists and millions of those dollars leave the state where the fine was issued.
Studies have shown increases in accidents, including dangerous intersection collisions that occur immediately following the installation of speed or red light cameras. The tickets issued by these ATMs, and the kangaroo court system set up to process them, violate your constitutional rights to due process and equal protection under the law.
Even worse, another tactic the camera vendors use to make their programs profitable is manipulating speed limits and signal timing. Yellow light times are lowered to dangerously short intervals, causing erratic driving and an increase in accidents. Motorists are left with the choice of slamming on their brakes to avoid a ticket or passing through the intersection a fraction of a second after the signal moves from yellow to red and being fined $50, $100, $200, or even $500 in some cities.
Top employees of Redflex have been convicted of fraud and bribery in Chicago and other locations. Redflex and other camera vendors buy off and lobby politicians, brokering backroom deals to enrich themselves at the expense of your liberty.
When the public learns the truth about the steep fines and increase in accidents, as well as the backroom deals that brought the fraudulent ATMs to their city, the backlash is immediate.
ATM’s have been struck down in court in multiple states and banned in several others. Violations of due process, equal protection, and wrongful prosecution are among the many reasons given. Manipulation of yellow light times has been uncovered in multiple states, brought before judges, and when proven, resulted in millions of dollars in refunds.
Campaign for Liberty county and state groups have been waging an organized fight against these scameras and have won many battles nationwide. Red light cameras in dozens of cities have been removed, and refunds of fraudulent photo tickets have been received. It hasn’t been easy to go up against the camera profiteers, but our grassroots activists have been successful in passing outright bans or using existing law to end the camera programs in 28 states and countless cities.
Check out your state Campaign for Liberty page here to see if they are currently working on this issue. (Be sure to check back often for new battles.)
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