Ticketed in a flash by a speed camera. It's something many drivers in Maryland say they're familiar with. But whether they agree with the camera or not, most admit they pay up.
Isreal Kloss, however, refused to pay up and fought his two tickets in Montgomery County court. He also learned some useful information that helped him get out of the ticket.
He started by looking up the law. In Maryland, every speed camera must have its calibration checked daily. Kloss requested this log for the camera that snapped his car. He says he found a loophole
“They only complied with statutes requirement of a signature.,” he says. “And eliminated the calibration requirement attached to that signature.”
Kloss told the judge hearing his case that someone else was driving his car since the citations were issued during his wedding weekend. He won his case.
But he's in the minority, says Ron Ely who helps drivers like Kloss challenge their citations.
“The odds are definitely against people,” Ely says.
He says in most cases, it's David vs. Goliath. The cameras are presumed to be right even if evidence suggests otherwise.
In a letter obtained by ABC7, Cheverly, Md. officials raise serious concerns about their speed cameras to the vendor, Optotraffic, saying, "Not only are the cameras not functioning properly, they are producing violations for invisible vehicles.”
“The machine aren't always right,” Ely says. “There have been cases where speed cameras have issued tickets in error.”
But Maryland municipalities say there are protocols in place to ensure accuracy. In Bowie, ABC7 watched while a technician and an officer tested the cameras. The police chief says it happens twice a day.
As for Kloss, he says drivers should try to beat the odds if they think they're innocent
“ I would hope more people would contest them,” he says. “And they would go in there armed to the teeth."