Many cities and counties are using cameras to catch drivers who run red lights. If you have received a ticket for such an offense, you may think that you are caught red handed and there is nothing you can do to dispute the ticket. Fortunately, traffic ticket defense attorneys have a variety of defenses that they use to dispute these tickets each and every day. Here are a few of the possible defenses they may be able to use to dispute your red light ticket.
The Legality of the Camera
There are a lot of questions surrounding the legality of using cameras to catch red light runners. The laws vary from city to city, county to county, and state to state as to whether these cameras are legal. In areas where the cameras are legal, there are certain laws that must be adhered to or the ticket may be dismissed. For example, some cities require signs to be clearly posted at intersections where cameras are in use. If a sign is not present, or is obscured by an overgrown tree, your ticket may be thrown out. An attorney will work to determine what the laws are in relation to red light cameras where you were photographed and if everything was done legally.
If the Camera is Properly Maintained
Another defense that is often used by traffic ticket defense lawyers fighting red light camera tickets is whether the camera was properly maintained and working. The cameras have to be calibrated and maintained routinely. If this work is not done, the camera may take a photograph too soon. This means that the camera may take a picture of you before the light even turns red. An attorney may request maintenance records from the city or county where the camera is placed to help determine if the camera is being properly maintained or not.
The Risks Involved in Stopping At the Light
The last defense that a traffic ticket defense attorney may raise if you received a ticket for running a red light is that there was a risk to stopping at the light. An officer who sees someone running a red light has some discretion in assessing risks; a camera does not. Perhaps a car was tailgating you and you could have been hit by stopping at a yellow light. Or maybe it was raining and your car may have slid or fishtailed if you hit your brakes and stopped abruptly. An attorney can argue that there were risks involved in stopping for a yellow light.
If a camera caught you running a red light, paying the ticket is not the only option available to you. A traffic ticket defense attorney may be able to raise a variety of defenses to help get your ticket dismissed. Contact a traffic ticket defense lawyer, like those at Tolbert & Tolbert, LLP, today to schedule a consultation.