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Mistaken Identity in Traffic Camera Ticket


motoguy128

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I'm not a big fan of traffic cameras, but I'm even less impressed with how they track down the accussed and push the burden of proof onto the accussed. I guess that's normal in the justice system.

 

So here's the story:

 

My wife gets a violation notice in the mail from the City of Arlington, TX Police Department, Red Light Enforcement. They have her name (before we were married) and in the photo is a Black Nissan Altima, the same year as hers, with what looks like a Texas plate although hte photo is a little blurred. But...here's the kicker... the plate number is the same as the Iowa plates she had.

 

We actually traded in that car for a new Altima in Feb '08. The violation occured in August. That particular weekend we were out of town traveling. So I'm trying to decided which aveunue do we use ot prove that's not us.

 

So my wife fills out a notarized Affidavit and send it in and we figure the issue is closed. Last week we get another violation notice. Same car, but the photo is much more clear... it's definitely a Texas plate. At first we think it's a second notice for the first violation... but then I look at hte dates and relaize it's a second violation. Great...this a** hat is runnign red lights and we get all his tickets and whatever glitch there is in the system... it's not gettign fixed.

 

Well I call the company that handles the violation. They are pretty good to deal with actually. Our car is a lease, and it turns out so is thsi other person. BUT...big BUT... they rely on Nissan Leasing to provide the informaiton on the identity of the owner/driver since the car is registered to Nissan as a lease.

 

I press them for more info and he checks wiht his supervisor and they run the Texas plate in the DMW records and the VIN # does not match with the one that Nissan gave them. Now here's the first breakdown. If there is a discrepancy... maybe the Affidavit that Nissan submitted should be rejected. Nope... I need to contact Nissan to get them to recognize the error and send in a new Affidavit. So I contact Nissan and tell them abotu the issue. The guy look up the info for the 2 VIN's and transferrs me to the leasing department. Then I hit the wall. I'm not my wife...even though I have the SSN and all nessesary info, I'm not authorized to administer her account. Crap. I tell her I don't care about any personal info...not to mention the vehcile was turned in 8 months ago and is paid off completely...I just want the case reviewed. "Sorry sir, only the autorized person for this file can request the review".

 

SO my wifes calls them and they recognize there's a problem. Apparently they don't bother to verify the state of the plate in question. They didn't think it's was likely that 2 Nissan Altimas with the same 6 digit plate number would be registered in 2 or more states. Well...guess what...we beat the odds, and we keep getting tickets.

 

If we keep getting notices we will probably contact an attorney to force Nissan to fix their system. the last thing we want is a collection getting placed on our credit record.

 

Nissan said they will give us notice in writtig that the issue has been addressed and a copy of the Affidavit they are sending out.

 

Issue #1: Traffic Cameras cannot make a positive ID of the driver or even the owner when a lease vehcile is involved.

 

Issue #2: Traffic Cameras make the accused guilty until proven innocent. Their only recourse it to mail in Affidavit.

 

Issue #3: Nissan Leasing is not doing complete checks of identity

 

Issue #4: Nissan does not make any distinction between "active" and "inactive" account when doing ID checks. they should check active accounts first, then if there are not "hits" check the inactive database.

 

 

I found out that there are roughly 10 million number combinations for 6 digit alpha numeric plate numbers. I'd guess there's about 300,000 leased Nissan Altimas on the road in the US so that improves the odds, but then again what'' the total number of leased cars on the road?

 

Any math majors? What are the odds error this occurred? I figure I had a better chance and winning the Powerball lottery.

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Man... sorry. I've got nothing (but sympathy for you) on this one.

 

I hate it when logic and reason don't help the situation at all.

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If this happened here in CA that ticket would most likely be dismissed, especially if they could not positivly ID the driver. If it was me I would get an attorney

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Joe Frickin' Friday
Any math majors? What are the odds error this occurred? I figure I had a better chance and winning the Powerball lottery.

 

Some states seem to have constraints on how many letters and numbers there are, and how the numbers and letters are laid out, e.g. the letters are often grouped together, and so are the numbers (e.g. "EKD-937").

 

If any of the six places can have a number or a letter, then there are over 2 billion possible combinations.

 

If the possibilites are limited to plates with exactly three letters and exactly three numbers (and the letters and numbers are grouped as described earlier), then we're at 17.6 million possible combinations. That includes just plates with the three numbers first, PLUS plates with the three letters first.

 

If we further limit it to plates with only the three letters first (or instead, only plates with the three numbers first), then we're down to 8.8 million, which is in the ballpark of your 10M figure.

 

Pick one of those plates, and someone else has a 1 in ~9M chance of picking the same plate. What are the odds they have the same leased car? Let's make some wild-ass guesses:

 

Leased cars = 5M out of 200M registered cars

 

2005 Nissan Altima = 1 model out of 100 possible car models

 

black = 1 color out of 5 possible for 2005 Altima

 

So the odds now would be 1/9M * (5/200) * (1/100) * (1/5)

 

or 1 in 180 billion.

 

Odds of winning a six-ball lottery draw? 1 in 175 billion.

 

Congratulations, you just won the lottery. :grin:

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Our car was actually a Dark Grey and a 2.5, not a 2.5S as the violatiors car was. But they both were 2006 models. The VIN's weren't very close though. The first part is of course the same (same model, mfg, same factory in TN).

 

One thing that also reduces the odds... the Altima ranks around 7 or 8 for best selling passenger vehicles over those years. Also, not all states have 6 digit plates, so the total pool of possible vehciles is reduced.

 

OTOH... what are the odds that that this one particular Altima with all of these factors is driven in a city with traffic cameras and the driver is someone that runs red lights. How about that one? Lots of different angles here.

 

But it's still some pretty long odds. I suppose it justifies why Nissan doesn't bother verifying the state of the plate.

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I think Mitch has hit the nail on the head. Go out today and Buy a few powerball or mega million or lottery tickets. You have proven you are 1/180 billion in unlucky, so why not change it to lucky.

To your post, I think these traffic cameras are a pain the the a##.

Their unreliable and also I agree with you. Guilty before proven innocent is not the protocol of justice I was taught. Let me see if I can remember. Oh yes, thats it, Innocent until proven guilty.

good luck.

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In Ca, leased vehicles are registered to both the leasing company and the person who leased the vehicle.

I am not a fan of red light cameras. The jury is still out on whether they reduce collisions or not. My feeling is they increase accidents as timid drivers stop for an early yellow and get clobbered from behind.

Better keep an eye on your credit reports in case an $8/hr clerk send this to collections.

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Have you considered moving across the river into Illinois? :grin:

 

You mean to the Socialist People Republic of Illinois and their mindless robotic DMV employees. No thank you.

 

Actually, the funny thing is that we traded in that car in Feb and these violations occurred in July and September. We could move to Canada and we'd still be getting these notices.

 

My wife is still getting some BS notice from San Diego regarding some parking violation that she took care of 6 years ago when she lived there. I hear parking in and around San Diego is interesting along with inconsistent rules on various beaches that are poorly marked. She has lots of stories.

 

They have red light cameras in Hannibal, MO 50 miles south of thre. Supposedly they set-up the timing so that a semi could safely stop in time with a "resonable reaction time" when driving the pseed limits. Most of the truckers I hear from dispute that and I agree. The yellow is very, very short. Clearly a money generator. If they need money that bad, just pass or increse the hotel or local sales tax.

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Forget that mess, move up into northern Wisconsin and live stress free.

 

That's better.

 

This all could be worse. I could be the poor smuck that drives a black '06 Altima that now has $150 in unpaid violations in Arlington, TX. He must be starting to think that despite the flashing lights, he's getting away with rolling through the light. I wonder if he'll keep racking them up in the mean time.

 

We sent the story to our local paper and the Today Show. We kow hte publisher. They might see if the Dallas paper's are interested. We actually have a couple friends that just moved down there this year. No... they don't drive a black Altima.

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In Florida the photos are examined by a certified LEO, the tag run to confirm it matches the vehicle it's displayed on and then sent to the registered owner by the LEO agency (like a parking ticket). Even leased vehicles will (should) still have the actual information of the leaser when run on an LEO computer. Rental car companies get sent a ticket also and then they track you down for payment based on who was renting that car at that time.

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CoarsegoldKid

Tell us how the cameras work and operator ID'd when a MC rider violates the signal if the rider is wearing a tinted shield and the plate in on the rear.

 

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Tell us how the cameras work and operator ID'd when a MC rider violates the signal if the rider is wearing a tinted shield and the plate in on the rear.

 

Cite not issued in most municipalities. Must be able to identify license plate and driver in picture.

 

P.S. - doesn't matter if it's only a rear plate, there are usually two cameras (front and rear).

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Tell us how the cameras work and operator ID'd when a MC rider violates the signal if the rider is wearing a tinted shield and the plate in on the rear.

 

Cite not issued in most municipalities. Must be able to identify license plate and driver in picture.

 

P.S. - doesn't matter if it's only a rear plate, there are usually two cameras (front and rear).

 

Arlington doesn't seem to care about that. They only have photos of the car. Actually, the car didn't "blast" through a red light, it simply rolled through a right turn at 11mph. It may have likely slowed further at the stop line, but there's no photo at the stop line. The car presented no danger to traffic, since the light sequence was allowing only opposing trqaffic through, not cross traffic. It's a money generating ticket...clearly.

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It's a money generating ticket...clearly.

 

Yes, rolling through stops at 11 mph is never going to be an issue...clearly.

 

 

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I get a bank lien for the registration for the bike I sold to fasterpill 4 or 5 years ago every single year. It doesn't matter how many times I've shown them the paperwork documenting the sale and showing them the new registration in a different state and updated my address on the vehicle, they continue to send the registration notices to an address I haven't lived at for many years, and then place a lien on my bank account to wthdraw the money plus penalties, and then the bank charges me $80 on top of that. I've never gotten a refund for the 5 extra tears of registration, let alone the penalties from the DMV and the bank and they appear to have absolutely no way to fix it. I figure I'll be registering that bike involuntarily for the rest of my life.

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Harry_Wilshusen
I get a bank lien for the registration for the bike I sold to fasterpill 4 or 5 years ago every single year. It doesn't matter how many times I've shown them the paperwork documenting the sale and showing them the new registration in a different state and updated my address on the vehicle, they continue to send the registration notices to an address I haven't lived at for many years, and then place a lien on my bank account to wthdraw the money plus penalties, and then the bank charges me $80 on top of that. I've never gotten a refund for the 5 extra tears of registration, let alone the penalties from the DMV and the bank and they appear to have absolutely no way to fix it. I figure I'll be registering that bike involuntarily for the rest of my life.

 

Get a lawyer to write a letter. It may be cheaper than $80 + registration and penalties a year.

It might help if the lawyer has the same last name. :)

 

Harry

 

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Transfer title to the bank and let them figure out how to get money from themself. :/

 

 

We get mail w/financial data (stocks, bank accounts, checks, negotiable securities) for a family that lived inour house in 1985.

We've been the only resident since then.

I've returned, hilited, written in large letters on the outside, sent bunch back in large envelope w/letter, called, told them any more negotiable stuff I'd cash (not really), tried the post office to stop it from going out on carrier's route, told them I'd spindle and mutilate any further items, all to no avail.

Still shows up like clockwork. :dopeslap:

Computers are as efficient as the user operating them.

Tron was right.

200px-Tron_poster.jpg

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I get a bank lien for the registration for the bike I sold to fasterpill 4 or 5 years ago every single year. It doesn't matter how many times I've shown them the paperwork documenting the sale and showing them the new registration in a different state and updated my address on the vehicle, they continue to send the registration notices to an address I haven't lived at for many years, and then place a lien on my bank account to wthdraw the money plus penalties, and then the bank charges me $80 on top of that. I've never gotten a refund for the 5 extra tears of registration, let alone the penalties from the DMV and the bank and they appear to have absolutely no way to fix it. I figure I'll be registering that bike involuntarily for the rest of my life.

 

Get a lawyer to write a letter. It may be cheaper than $80 + registration and penalties a year.

It might help if the lawyer has the same last name. :)

 

Harry

 

Make sure you have all your paperwork in order. If so, I wonder if you can get a court order to block this from continuing.

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Saddest thing about this whole camera/ticket thing is that if you were the governor or a senators son or daughter (etc) you would have never even gotten the ticket in the first place. More B.S. for the masses to deal with. After all us peasants don't pay enough in taxes...

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