By C.N. Staff Writer
Over the past year the District has seen a large increase in its speed cameras. It has remained a hot topic during city council legislative sessions, particularly because many residents are complaining to city officials that the cameras are inaccurately ticketing.
Residents concerns had fallen on death ears, until a speed camera ticketed one of D.C.’s own Metropolitan police officers when he was not speeding. Sgt. Mark Robinson was ticketed inside of the Third Street Tunnel and decided to blow the whistle on some of D.C.’s improper cameras.
The 22-year old veteran told the Washington Times, “I thought about it and realized, no problem, this is a perfect opportunity to challenge these citations.” His result was a decision in his favor by a hearing examiner. If upheld, that decision could force D.C. officials to return $1.8 million in penalties associated with more than 14,000 tickets that misidentified the posted speed limit.
In November of last year, Mayor Gray, responding to wide criticism of the cameras, announced changes to the city’s speeding camera fines that took effect immediately without city council approval.
Fines for speeding 10 miles per hour over the posted speed limit were lowered to $50 from $75, fines for speeding 11-25 MPH over a posted limit will be lowered to $100 from $125. However fines for speeding 25 MPH or more over the posted limit will be raised to $300 from $250, with the mayor stating that he believes excessive speeding is particularly unsafe.