Why you need us

Red Light Cameras Unconstitutional?

COLLIER COUNTY, FL. – A judge in Aventura, just north of Miami, ruled to get rid of red light camera fines because they’re unconstitutional. Will Collier County soon be following in their footsteps?

On local woman is hoping commissioners that that initiative. Especially, after a camera at the intersection of Golden Gate Parkway and Collier Boulevard gave out a ticket she says may not have happened just a few counties away.

“It’s not always cut and dry,” Marcella Johnson tells me of the recent red light camera citation that left her fuming.

“I was behind the bus. The bus ran the late yellow light and by the time I was at the intersection and I could see the light above the bus, I was in the intersection and the light was red.”

In the video of Johnson’s violation from the cameras at that intersection, you can see the bus in front of her and her van appears behind it just a few seconds later.

“I’m not tailgating the bus. I was going way under the speed limit. I was going 31 and it’s 45,” Johnson explains.

She thought inspectors for the tape would see the bus was blocking her view of the light and thought if she got a ticket she would fight it in court.

That is until she got a surprise in the mail, “I did not expect it to come in my husband’s name. The car loan is under his name but I was the one driving it, so now I can’t even fight the ticket.”

Johnson’s husband would have to go to a hearing to contest the violation, something that he can’t take off of work to do. Marcella Johnson says this leaves her wondering if Collier County should reconsider the accuracy of these cameras, just like another county in Florida did. “It’s unconstitutional, it’s not right.”

Commissioner Donna Fiala says the ruling in Aventura was discussed by commissioners Tuesday. They decided to keep the cameras rolling until the appeals court has decided whether or not to uphold the ruling.