NEW CARROLLTON, Md. – The town of New Carrollton’s new mobile red light cameras are snapping up pictures like the paparazzi and motorists are calling the cameras out.
Danielle King got two tickets and says she’s been wrongly accused. “I got caught by one up there,” says King referring to the cameras along route 450.
Motorists complain they are being wrongly accused. King says,” I think they need to go away. I just think they are unfair. They need to go away.”
Fox 5 photographers stood at one intersection near 85th Avenue and caught the camera popping off like popcorn. Each ticket is a 75 dollar citation. One motorist shared his ticket.
He got cited in his white van, but a closer look at the ticket shows the vehicle is at a complete stop. Complaints are pouring in.
AAA Mid-Atlantic’s John Townsend says it appears drivers are getting ticketed; not for running the red light, but for stopping over the white line.
Townsend blasted the camera saying, “This is the most egregious one we’ve seen. It is so beyond the pale. It not only violated the spirit of the law it violates the letter of the law. It may be illegal in the state of Maryland. ”
During a short period, the cameras flashed continually and went off when cars were at a complete stop. We asked one motorist, “Did you go past the red light?” The unidentified driver said, “No, I didn’t. I’m still stopped here at the red light. If I went through then you wouldn’t be talking to me now. The camera went off. So am I going to get a ticket? Oh no. ”
Townsend said, “These people legally stopped for a red light, but they ventured into this box and they consider that technically to be red light running and it’s not. It smacks of I got you a game just for money.”
As the camera snapped another picture, we asked another motorist, “Do you realize you just got a red light ticket?” The unidentified woman said, “You’ve got to be kidding. You are kidding. Did you pass the red light? No!”
Some say it’s not just a camera, but a cash cow–snapping up photos of unsuspecting motorists.
Townsend said many motorists don’t even contest the tickets, in fact, one woman confirmed that saying; “if I got it I would don’t fight it no. If the camera is set to do it that way I just have to pay the ticket.
Townsend admits he’s one of those recently ticketed, but he fought it.
Fox 5 made an effort to talk with the New Carrollton PoliceDepartment and the city about the issue.
The chief said he’ll answer questions during office hours.
Triple-A says they’ve received numerous complaints from several cities using the mobile red light cameras along the Route 450corridor; including Bladensburg and Riverdale.