Originally Posted by jdmcq
Are you saying that you didn't do it, or that you disagree with the method by which you were caught?
The argument that people who are going to run redlights are going to do it anyways is just stupid. The people that are pre-disposed to murdering others are just "going to do it regardless", that doesn't mean that we should just stop trying to catch them.
That's an interesting analogy, but let's build it a little further. Snapping a picture of someone murdering someone close to you would offer very little comfort, and even having video of that same murder isn't enough to prove someone's guilt. I would put forth that the red light cameras endanger more lives by "rushing" people into either slamming on their brakes or gunning it through the light. It is regrettable, but it is
To answer your question, I'm saying both. I didn't run the light, and I'm offended that while other states have made red light cameras illegal, ours has not. I was already in the intersection as it turned red, the very tail end of the truck was over the "magic line" and triggered the camera. This means if I were driving a Mini i would have gotten off scott-free. The 0.2 seconds into the red is such a stupidly tight tolerance that I would argue it isn't possible to catch someone that quickly (after the light changes) on camera without either shortening the yellow, or firing up the camera early (which is against the 'rules' as far as red light cameras are concerned).
And here's why. In order to have a clear picture with a great depth of field you have to have a small aperture. To get a clear picture of something moving fast, you have to have a fast shutter speed. That means you either have to set the ISO of the camera very high (which will cause some pretty grainy pictures), or have a very bright flash to illuminate what you're capturing. Clearly, they've gone with the flash method. Now, when you send power to a light bulb or LED, light is not produced instantaneously. It takes about 0.1 seconds for an LED to light up, and twice as long for a regular light bulb to light up.
What this means is that the red light camera was turned on before the red light actually engaged, which means they're not playing by the rules. If I were still going to court to fight it, I would bring these points up in my defense. However, I found another way to deal with this ticket.
Snapping a picture of a crime is very similar to someone saying they saw someone commit a crime. It's hearsay because it's not the word of an officer. Now, here comes the loophole. Because an officer was not present to directly give me a ticket, the ticket was sent to the owner of the vehicle (my dad). Because my dad wasn't driving, they can't find him guilty of a crime that he didn't commit. As a result, he sends the ticket BACK with a copy of his drivers license and a written statement indicating he wasn't driving. The ticket is then dropped.
Now, for the "
holier than thou
" in this thread, all I'm gonna say is haters gonna hate. I drive through Chandler, Tempe, Phoenix, and Mesa every day of during the week for work and school. Each city has it's own rules as to how long a yellow light can be, so every yellow light is different. Now, this was the very first time I was at the intersection that I "ran the red light at." The yellow was significantly shorter than I'm used to....which should also be a crime. Statistics show that a 4 second yellow light (for streets with speeds of 40mph and up) have something on the order of a third less accidents than at other intersections. Anything shorter than that proves the city is just out for money under the false pretense of safety.
Now, I would say that we could improve safety by taking that same money from the cameras and revamping the DMV and drivers ed courses. It's wayyyy too easy (especially in Arizona) to get a drivers license. I say make it much more difficult. Video related:
Now, back to the topic at hand. The best ways to get around red light cameras:
1. Insure your car under your wifes name and vice versa.
2. Create an LLC and register your car to that.
3. Drive wearing a mask or fake beard (which I'm considering
4. Be holy. Drive at EXACTLY the speed limit at all times, and slam on the brakes the very second you see a yellow light regardless of how close (or far) you are from an intersection. After all, not going the speed limit is breaking the law, and who cares about anyone else on the road?
Here's some helpful links I used when I was doing some research.
Defense ideas in court
Some site that probably hates cameras as much as I do
A forum with some interesting view points
The last site that gave me the answer I was looking for.
Lastly, props to cr250jumper and Atripplet513 for actually printing the solution I needed in this case
. Thanks to everyone else who contributed! I hope (fingers crossed) that this will be the end of my problem. I'll post back if I run into any problems though.
Haters gonna hate.