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Advice on automated speeding citation via mail -- car not in my possession

Discussion in 'Speeding Tickets, Traffic & Moving Violations' started by Rodie, May 5, 2020.

  1. Rodie

    Rodie Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Hoping someone here can help me with some advice! Thanks in advance.

    I received a traffic citation for speed from a speed camera. My father was driving the car and I was not present. Here's some background/details:

    This is an extra car, I store it in my Dad's garage during winters (rear wheel drive.) He would drive it on nice days which is fine by me as he is doing me a favor. He was driving the car, the citation was issued in February.

    I'm in Ohio. I thought we had zero cameras and this wasn't allowed here, but apparently there are some very small towns doing this. I also believe there are some rules (i.e., they can't hit you with points or hit your credit score, etc.) In this case, the citation was issued by "Newburgh Heights Police Department."

    I received a letter/citation with a picture of the car, speed, etc. 78 mph in a 60 mph zone. My father likes to argue these things and I don't. On the reverse of the form there was a section I completed saying I was not in possession of the car and to list who was. I filled this out with my fathers name, DOB, and address and mail it back. I think this is over and he can deal with them how he sees fit.

    Get a second notice. I assumed these crossed in the mail and they hadn't processed my response yet. The second notice was nearly identical to the first and they did not recognize that I sent them anything or that there may be a problem with my response (more on this later.) I toss this out.

    Get a third "final" notice (dated 4/17) and called them. I actually left messages for two days straight, got no return call, and finally got a human on the phone today. I believe I'm talking to someone at a private company that is managing this for multiple jurisdictions but did not verify that (my impression.)

    Representative tell me that they received my response, but it was not signed and/or notarized as directed. I can't imagine I didn't sign it, but I know I didn't notarize it. I guess I missed this detail. Therefore, the transfer of responsibility was not completed. I offered to resubmit something and he says the deadline was 30 days and it has passed. I'm supposed to either pay this ($230.00) or go into collections.

    The next step I'm considering is calling the PD itself but am not sure this is the right thing to do. I work in another town more than an hour from the location of the citation and was at work during the time/date of the citation. I can prove I wasn't driving the car but unfortunately I don't know who to prove this to.

    Any advice appreciated.
  2. Zigner

    Zigner Well-Known Member

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    I'd suggest you pay the $230 and then have your dad reimburse you. Do it sooner rather than later.
    zddoodah likes this.
  3. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You can pay the $230 and AVOID "whatever WILL come next".

    You can ARGUE, IGNORE, WHINE, COMPLAIN (or more); BUT the $230 will grow into a $400, $500, or maybe a $1,000 assessment that will start DINGING (if not DAMAGING) your FICO.

    When all has been said and done, you'll still owe the $camera operator$ (and the city official$) MONEY.

    You could sue your father in small claims, or ask him to repay you for paying the debt.

    That would only make things tense, if not worse, between you and Pops.

    If I were facing your choices, I'd pay the $camera operator, remove the car from Pop's garage, store it in a private facility (or sell it); and get on with my life.

    Most of the time its best to move out smartly and silently.

    Life is too short to let nonsense destroy your groove.
  4. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Agree with the others. Pay it. Small town photocops are revenue generators and the process is legalized extortion. The town knows that most people are just going to pay to avoid collections and won't spend the thousands that it takes for a lawyer to appeal the conviction.

    We've got one of those nasty little towns in the Phoenix area with its own little kangaroo court and a Boss Hogg type of judge whose job is to rake in the money if you go one mile over the speed limit.

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