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Md: Caught speeding on camera, police officers refuse to pay tickets
Canadian Press ^ | 3/9/08

Posted on 03/09/2008 6:07:22 AM PDT by Mr. Brightside

Caught speeding on camera, police officers refuse to pay tickets

16 hours ago

ROCKVILLE, Md. — No matter what the cameras say, some drivers are refusing to pay dozens of $40 speeding fines.

Who? Police officers.

In the last eight months of 2007, Montgomery County's new speed cameras recorded 224 cases in which police vehicles were recorded travelling more than 15 kilometres an hour over the speed limit, according to department records.

Supervisors dismissed 76 of those citations after determining the officers were responding to calls or had valid reasons to break the speed limit.

But that left 148 who didn't have that excuse, and about two-thirds of those citations haven't been paid, said police Lt. Paul Starks.

The police union says officers shouldn't pay because the citations are issued to the owner of a vehicle, in this case the county, and not to the driver.

Police Chief Thomas Manger doesn't buy that argument.

"We are not above the law," Manger said. "It is imperative that the police department hold itself to the same standards that we're holding the public to."

Manger said officers who continue to ignore citations might be disciplined.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Maryland
KEYWORDS: beserkcop; donutwatch; holdmuhdonut; leo; montgomerycounty; racingfordonuts
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1 posted on 03/09/2008 6:07:22 AM PDT by Mr. Brightside
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To: Mr. Brightside

If they won’t obey the law then they should not be entrusted to enforce the law. They are not above the law. Fire ‘em.


2 posted on 03/09/2008 6:13:37 AM PDT by steelyourfaith
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To: Mr. Brightside
The only surprising thing here is that ANY of these tickets were paid.
3 posted on 03/09/2008 6:14:40 AM PDT by TCats (The Clintons Are Not Just Wrong - They Are Certifiable AND Dangerous! See my Page)
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To: Mr. Brightside

They’ll figure out a way around it. The law doesn’t apply to them, don’t you know? Besides, with Canada already entrusting the government to take care of their healthcare needs, it’s only fitting that the government should take care of their traffic fines as well. Isn’t that right Comrades??


4 posted on 03/09/2008 6:17:10 AM PDT by Pablo64 (What is popular is not always right. What is right is not always popular.)
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To: Mr. Brightside

The state should seriously sue such police officers. Favoritism is not acceptable, and the state can set a good example by not allowing these police officers to get away with what they did. The state would receive even more money to themselves if they decided to take even harsher legal actions against such cops, along with the union that represents such cops.


5 posted on 03/09/2008 6:19:22 AM PDT by johnthebaptistmoore (Vote for conservatives AT ALL POLITICAL LEVELS! Encourage all others to do the same on November 4!)
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To: TCats
The only surprising thing here is that ANY of these tickets were paid.

It goes to show that there are some very fine officers on the police force who deserve our commendations and respect. To them I tip my hat and say thank you for protecting us.

6 posted on 03/09/2008 6:25:01 AM PDT by IllumiNaughtyByNature (Senator McCain, what did GWB promise you back in 2000? And you believed him? BWAHAAAAA!)
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To: johnthebaptistmoore
"the state can set a good example"

In theory, great. However, the State rarely, if ever, sets a good example.

7 posted on 03/09/2008 6:26:28 AM PDT by TCats (The Clintons Are Not Just Wrong - They Are Certifiable AND Dangerous! See my Page)
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To: Pablo64

The story is from Rockville, Maryland, USA.


8 posted on 03/09/2008 6:26:53 AM PDT by Mr. Brightside ( Ronald Reagan Would Back McCain - http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1970504/posts)
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To: Mr. Brightside

It sounds like a good reason to get rid of speed cameras.


9 posted on 03/09/2008 6:28:48 AM PDT by Tribune7 (How is inflicting pain and death on an innocent, helpless human being for profit, moral?)
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To: Pablo64
This is in Rockville, Maryland being reported in a Canadian newspaper.

We are started to get redlight cameras down here in Central Florida and there is a lot of controversy over it. To calm down the masses, the city council has decided to just make the infraction a $125 fine and not a moving violation which would put points against your license. This way the city gets to put your cash in the general fund.

My question is what happens if a police officer is sitting there? Get points then? Higher fine?

10 posted on 03/09/2008 6:30:17 AM PDT by Normal4me
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To: Mr. Brightside

If officers are performing their duty, they are allowed to ignore the posted speed limits. Their vehicles have warning lights to inform people that they are in a hurry. But when they are not responding to a call, they should drive a reasonable speed and observe the traffic signals just like everyone else.


11 posted on 03/09/2008 6:32:07 AM PDT by JamesP81 ("I am against "zero tolerance" policies. It is a crutch for idiots." --FReeper Tenacious 1)
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To: Mr. Brightside
CITIZENS ARREST, CITIZENS ARREST
SURPRISE! SURPRISE! SUPRISE!

GOMER

12 posted on 03/09/2008 6:33:36 AM PDT by DeaconRed (We must make sure our Brave Military gets the support to Win This WAR. Not another Viet Nam.)
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To: Mr. Brightside

“Do as I say, not as I do.”


13 posted on 03/09/2008 6:33:49 AM PDT by webschooner (A Conservative voting for Juan McCain is like trying to pick up a turd by the clean end.)
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To: Mr. Brightside; Normal4me
Thanks, both of you. I guess I'm not recovered from the time change yet this morning. I just glanced at the byline and saw that it was a Canadian paper.

I'll go have some more coffee and see if that helps a bit.

14 posted on 03/09/2008 6:33:56 AM PDT by Pablo64 (What is popular is not always right. What is right is not always popular.)
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To: Mr. Brightside

They will get away with it. There IS a double standard, remember. They are the ONLY ONES....


15 posted on 03/09/2008 6:34:40 AM PDT by 2harddrive (...House a TOTAL Loss.....)
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To: Mr. Brightside
The police union says officers shouldn't pay because the citations are issued to the owner of a vehicle, in this case the county, and not to the driver.

Wow, talk about about Chutzpah

So by the same logic, if I get a speeding ticket my bank who owns the loan on my car should pay for my ticket ?

16 posted on 03/09/2008 6:35:44 AM PDT by Popman (Gold Standard: Trying to squeeze a 50 lb economy back into a 5 lb bag)
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To: Mr. Brightside

I have never seen one going the speed limit. And they are required to obey the law unless they have their flashing lights on. But that is not the way it is.


17 posted on 03/09/2008 6:38:21 AM PDT by YOUGOTIT (The Greatest Threat to our Security is the US Senate)
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Comment #18 Removed by Moderator

To: JamesP81

We have several motorcycle cops that go to work in Austin about the same time I do. They seem to ignore all speed limits and other traffic laws. I called the 311 number one day, and they said I needed to get the license plate number. Yeah, like I can read that tiny plate as they are driving 10 - 20 MPH faster than I am and it is still dark.

I really think those crotch rockets were manufactured without turn signals or low beam headlights. I flashed my high beams at one after he passed and I noticed the blue high beam indicator on his “dash” was lit as he passed me. He DID get the message and put them on low beam.


19 posted on 03/09/2008 6:43:56 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Both dim candidates promise change and/or hope. I don't think the USA can afford their message.)
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To: Mr. Brightside

There are more sledgehammers in America than there are traffic surveillance cameras.

“It don’t mean a thing, if it ain’t got that swing!”


20 posted on 03/09/2008 6:44:53 AM PDT by mkjessup (Famous 'Rat Initials: FDR, HST, JFK, LBJ .... to be followed by *B.O.* ?!? - I don't think so!! LOL)
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To: JamesP81

If the cops drove the speed limit around here, they would greatly impede the flow of traffic and cause a hazardous situation on the roadways, with all the cars packing together too closely behind them 5-6 lanes wide.


21 posted on 03/09/2008 6:48:03 AM PDT by FreedomPoster (Guns themselves are fairly robust; their chief enemies are rust and politicians) (NRA)
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To: Mr. Brightside

travelling more than 15 kilometres an hour over the speed limit,


What is this? KPH?


22 posted on 03/09/2008 6:49:45 AM PDT by PeterPrinciple ( Seeking the truth here folks.)
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To: steelyourfaith
ROFLOL - The cops are CORRECT.

The police union says officers shouldn't pay because the citations are issued to the owner of a vehicle, in this case the county, and not to the driver.

They are obeying the law. They are absolutely correct. The tickets are issued to the owner of the vehicle - the State. They are not issued to the driver. It is the States job to pay these tickets.

Now the State could punish the officers for being caught breaking department policy, but they can not force them to pay the ticket... under the law.

GRIN.

I'll bet if the department digs a little deeper, they would find that most of the rest of the 'speeding' incidents are also job related. The pencil pushers just didn't look that hard or they are excluding a specific type of event that the job requires.

23 posted on 03/09/2008 6:54:49 AM PDT by Pikachu_Dad
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To: Normal4me

This way the city gets to put your cash in the general fund.


After a few times maybe the drivers running the lights will realize that not running the light and putting others into jeapordy via an accident may just stop the cash outlay they were making.


24 posted on 03/09/2008 6:55:02 AM PDT by deport ( -- Cue Spooky Music --)
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To: Popman
So by the same logic, if I get a speeding ticket my bank who owns the loan on my car should pay for my ticket ?

Your logic is incorrect.

The bank is the lien holder on your vehicle. They are not the 'owner'.

You are the registered owner of the vehicle {presumably - or somebody in your family}.

If you loan your car to your sister and she gets caught by one of these cameras, the ticket is coming to you.

If you loan your car to your son and he gets caught by one of these cameras, the ticket is coming to you.

If you loan your car to your girlfriend and she gets caught by one of these cameras, the ticket is coming to you.

If you loan your car to the drunken bum hanging out in front of the store and he gets caught by one of these cameras, the ticket is coming to you.

That is the way those laws were written. Because the cameras cannot identify who was driving. They can only identify the vehicle.

It would be up to you to seek reimbursement from the violator, but YOU WOULD BE THE PERSON PAYING THE TICKET AND PAYING THE FINE IF YOU DIDN'T>

25 posted on 03/09/2008 7:00:08 AM PDT by Pikachu_Dad
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To: Mr. Brightside
The police union says officers shouldn't pay because the citations are issued to the owner of a vehicle, in this case the county, and not to the driver.

It's for your safety.

Like handcuffs.

26 posted on 03/09/2008 7:00:48 AM PDT by MrBambaLaMamba (Hussein Obama for Caliph 2008!)
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To: Pikachu_Dad
The police union says officers shouldn't pay because the citations are issued to the owner of a vehicle, in this case the county, and not to the driver.

It gets even worse. So some clown steals a car and gets caught speeding --- then the victim of the theft is fined? :)

27 posted on 03/09/2008 7:01:38 AM PDT by steelyourfaith
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To: Mr. Brightside

While cops should not be above the law, this could backfire. One pet peeve of mine is being stuck on a freeway behind a police cruiser going exactly the speed limit for 20 miles or so, letting dozens of cars back up behind them. (Yes, I think a reasonable highway speed is typically 5 to 10 over the limit).


28 posted on 03/09/2008 7:08:18 AM PDT by Larry Lucido
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To: steelyourfaith

The law says the county is liable. That is the law. If the state wants to change the law, that is one thing, adjusting what the law means, after the fact, to cover this problem, is not law. County, city, state, pays, that should generate some squealing, or a quick attempt at changing the law.

Then again, if they didn’t have those little dollar earning/stealing electronic devices, problem solved.


29 posted on 03/09/2008 7:08:34 AM PDT by wita (truthspeaks@freerepublic.com)
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To: deport
I am not advocating running red lights, I am pissed about the double standard when it comes to laws. If you run a red light you SHOULD pay a fine and get points if that is what the law says REGARDLESS of who you are. By the same token, if the cops aren't going to follow the laws as they are sworn to do, then why should the rest of us? Change the laws if cops are allow to exceed the speed limit by 15-20 mph but then don't give me a ticket for doing the same speed.

/rant

30 posted on 03/09/2008 7:09:51 AM PDT by Normal4me
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To: Mr. Brightside

How many times have you been driving down any road doing the speed limit and have a cop go sailing by at a high rate of speed without lights flashing?
And have you said to yourself, “donuts must be ready at dunkin donuts?
And don’t tell me they were responding to an emergency,
that just doesn’t hold water.


31 posted on 03/09/2008 7:13:15 AM PDT by Joe Boucher (An enemy of Islam)
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To: Mr. Brightside
But that left 148 who didn't have that excuse, and about two-thirds of those citations haven't been paid,

And we have cops that post here all the time saying that people who say that cops want to be above the law are crazy.

Give them five days to pay or a month off without pay.

32 posted on 03/09/2008 7:26:09 AM PDT by org.whodat (What's the difference between a Democrat and a republican????)
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To: Mr. Brightside
Police Chief Thomas Manger doesn't buy that argument.

"We are not above the law," Manger said.

"It is imperative that the police department hold itself to the same standards that we're holding the public to."

********************

Hey Chief....

How about A HIGHER [PROFESSIONAL] STANDARD of conduct -- on-duty and especially off-duty...

AN EXEMPLARY STANDARD... of conduct
Kinda rings true from where this avaerage citizen is sitting...

We the people... are watching YOU!

33 posted on 03/09/2008 7:29:00 AM PDT by Wings-n-Wind (The main things are the plain things!)
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To: Mr. Brightside

Ha!
I regularly pass cops driving below the limit.
I also keep up with those who are speeding.


34 posted on 03/09/2008 7:29:49 AM PDT by G Larry (HILLARY CARE = DYING IN LINE!)
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To: Mr. Brightside
"We are not above the law," Manger said.

Yes you are Tom. And you darn well know it.

35 posted on 03/09/2008 7:30:18 AM PDT by Skooz (Any nation that would elect Hillary Clinton as its president has forfeited its right to exist.)
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To: Larry Lucido

When I lived in Alabama (late 1970s) the Bama state troopers would routinely drive side by side on the interstate maintaining a steady 55 mph.

The traffic behind them stacked up for miles.


36 posted on 03/09/2008 7:34:31 AM PDT by Skooz (Any nation that would elect Hillary Clinton as its president has forfeited its right to exist.)
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To: Mr. Brightside

Montgomery’s Finest Won’t Pay Fines [speed cameras Maryland]
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1982805/posts


37 posted on 03/09/2008 7:36:33 AM PDT by PAR35
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To: Mr. Brightside
If the law states that the owner of the vehicle is responsible for the fine, then so be it. However, the owner of the vehicle (police dept.) knows who was driving the vehicle at the time so the answer is simple:


38 posted on 03/09/2008 7:36:41 AM PDT by whd23
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To: Pikachu_Dad

“It would be up to you to seek reimbursement from the violator, but YOU WOULD BE THE PERSON PAYING THE TICKET AND PAYING THE FINE IF YOU DIDN’T”

Not in AZ. There, if you are not clearly the person in the picture, the ticket will be dismissed.


39 posted on 03/09/2008 7:38:30 AM PDT by CountryLawyer (9/11 We shall never forget.)
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To: Pablo64

This is in Rockville, Maryland. USA, not Canada.


40 posted on 03/09/2008 7:40:43 AM PDT by ktscarlett66 (Face it girls....I'm older and I have more insurance....)
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To: Pikachu_Dad; Popman
So by the same logic, if I get a speeding ticket my bank who owns the loan on my car should pay for my ticket ?

Your logic is incorrect.

How about a rental?

41 posted on 03/09/2008 7:47:52 AM PDT by Living Free in NH
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To: Mr. Brightside

Well technically and legally, the union is correct. The cops’ names are not on the title, they don’t pay the insurance, repairs, taxes/tags/registration. And tickets are issued to the owner of the car. If they find that it was truly not an emergency, they should set up some way to be reimbursed by the officer assigned to the car.

I’ll be honest, I’ve never seen a LEO speeding without having lights flashing. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen but I’ve never seen it. I would bet that the majority of the time they are on their way to a call but didn’t turn their lights on.


42 posted on 03/09/2008 7:50:29 AM PDT by ktscarlett66 (Face it girls....I'm older and I have more insurance....)
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To: Mr. Brightside
Arizona: Police Arrest Man for Driving Impossible Speed Scottsdale, Arizona arrests a man after speed camera alleges a rental Hyundai traveled 11 MPH faster than it could travel.

Pargo in Hyundai Sonata

Scottsdale, Arizona police have arrested Lawrence Pargo, 26, for speeding based solely on the evidence of its photo radar machines that registered his vehicle traveling at an impossibly high speed of 147 MPH. Scottsdale police maintain that Pargo's rented silver Sonata drove between 102 and 147 MPH past four speed cameras on May 21 at around six in the morning. Pargo's Hyundai, according to the manufacturer, has a drag-limited top speed of 137 MPH.

"This is a rental vehicle so it is doubtful that it could attain even this maximum speed," said Eric Skrum, spokesman for the National Motorists Association. "At a bare minimum, this is a ten-mph discrepancy and obviously an invalid ticket. I would suggest that rather than investigate this individual, the police should be checking their own equipment. This needs to be a top priority as there is no telling how many other drivers have received unjustified tickets."

Automotive reviewer Robert Farago wrote of the car, "only an Impala driver would mistake the Sonata LX for a high-performance sedan."

Police hope to collect at least $800 in tickets from Pargo. Scottsdale has jailed a number of motorists accused solely by the camera. One motorist was arrested after flipping off the camera at an alleged 82 MPH.

Source: Man arrested in 147 mph Loop 101 violation (East Valley Tribune (AZ), 6/2/2006)

http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/11/1162.asp

Oh, the police sure can ID you! They usually choose not to, lest they create a scene like the torch-weilding villagers outside of Dr. Frankenstein's abode. Mostly, they just collect their fines, so they're happy. Generally, revenue enhancement is the goal of this Big Brotherism. They could care less about points or safety. 147MPH Hyundais notwithstanding.

43 posted on 03/09/2008 7:52:08 AM PDT by Sooth2222 ("Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of congress. But I repeat myself." M.Twain)
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To: Joe Boucher
I have had that happen more than once so what I do is get behind the officer and follow at a safe distance the same speed he is going haven't been stopped for it yet. I also check to see if any officer is wearing a seat belt and if not I will take down the car # and report him to headquaters.
44 posted on 03/09/2008 7:58:37 AM PDT by bikerman (_ _ . /_ _ _ /_ . . / / . . . . / . / . _ . . / . _ _ . / / . . _ / . . . //)
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To: wita
Some laws are premised on logic, i.e., speed kills, hence we have speed limit laws.

Some laws are premised on illogic, i.e., it is the vehicle and not the driver that is liable for violation of the speeding laws.

Yes, the legislature is often to blame for insanity. Nothing new there.

45 posted on 03/09/2008 8:23:37 AM PDT by steelyourfaith
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To: Pikachu_Dad
I think the answer is to go to court and force the prosecution to meet their burden of proof that you (the respondent) was actually the person who committed the crime.

Cross Exam:
Respondent: Does the intersection camera clearly show that I was the person driving the car?
Testifying Official: No
Respondent: So why am I being charged with a crime?
Official: Because the car was registered to you.
Respondent: Can you prove that I was the driver?
Official: No
Respondent: I am finished with my cross-examination.
Respondent: Your honor, I motion for dismissal based on lack of evidence.

Of course, this assumes that you live in a state (like mine, Pennsylvania) that still has a burden of proof of beyond a reasonable doubt for ALL crimes, including traffic infractions.

-Bill

46 posted on 03/09/2008 8:26:37 AM PDT by billakay
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To: TCats

Just imagine government health care!

Anyone drawing a government paycheck would magically be moved to the front of the line for office visits, prescriptions, even operations & transplants!


47 posted on 03/09/2008 8:30:53 AM PDT by relictele (Liberal: one who walks away from a TSA queue still convinced government can solve problems.)
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To: Mr. Brightside
YOUR FIRED!
48 posted on 03/09/2008 8:34:02 AM PDT by redreno
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To: Pikachu_Dad
By your logic we could also apply that to gun laws?

If someone uses MY REGISTERED gun to shoot someone, I'm responsible?

B.S.!!

49 posted on 03/09/2008 8:36:32 AM PDT by unixfox (The 13th Amendment Abolished Slavery, The 16th Amendment Reinstated It !)
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To: steelyourfaith

that’s exactly what would happen...but you can go to court over these tickets. this is why they don’t give you points for speed cameras..there is NO way of knowing who was driving.


50 posted on 03/09/2008 8:53:28 AM PDT by Katya (Homo Nosce Te Ipsum)
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