A new case just came down from the California Court of Appeal, People v. Borzakian, cite as 2012 DJDAR 1923 (until the actual opinion is published in the advance sheets).
The case holds that: “Police officer is not qualified to authenticate photographic evidence of traffic violation where private company was contracted to maintain and service automated system.”
OK, what does that all mean. It means that if you have been cited on a camera ticket in Alameda County, where they have a private company that maintains the camera system you cannot be convicted unless there is substantial change in the trial procedure now being used in the courts.
Right now the police send an officer in with the computer and the pictures to show your car going through the red light and your beautiful mug in the photo. The company that maintains the equipment is not in court. This case says that the company must have a representative that knows what’s going on in court. Since the Australian company is in Arizona that may be easier said than done.
So set your case for trial and cite the case above to the judge. You’ll be glad you did, you’ll save yourself $480 in fines, and a point on your driving record.
As always consult a lawyer if you have questions about the specifics of your case.