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Robocam ruling: Companies not properly licensed

Posted at 6:51 PM, Mar 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-17 21:51:51-04
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Photo enforcement cameras: Arizona's Attorney General Mark Brnovich says the companies running those systems were breaking state law -- because their workers don't have the right state licenses. But does that give you a chance to erase those old tickets?
      
Until voters ordered the cameras shut down, Tucson used red light cameras that also measured speed.
       
Pima County used speed cameras until County Supervisors decided the program had become ineffective.
        
But cameras are still up and clicking in other parts of the state -- and the Attorney General ruling -- could make those tickets invalid.
 
The new ruling from the state Attorney General that questions the validity of photo enforcement systems throughout the state makes people think of a tantalizing question: will that help you get out of your old tickets?
     
The Attorney General ruling hinges on who reviews the video and decides if you should get a ticket.
       
When Tucson still had photo enforcement, Tucson Police made a point of assigning an officer to view the video and decide if you deserved a ticket. But in most cases, including Pima County's old speed camera program, workers from the camera companies made the call.
      
That arrangement prompted Attorney General Mark Brnovich to rule because the company workers were doing an investigation, they need Private Investigator licenses.
        
The Attorney General’s office says the ruling's not an order to stop clicking pictures but it could be important if somebody sues.
          
But can you use the ruling to erase a photo enforcement ticket and recover the fine?
         
Attorney James Nesci is a specialist in DUI and traffic law.  He says, ruling or no ruling, you're probably out of luck.
 
“Because what happens is you have to appeal within 14 days of the date of your conviction and for a lot of people those days are already gone so there's really not going to be much of an issue as far as that's concerned."
      
Nesci says the ruling might not apply to Tucson anyway because Tucson reviewed video with real officers, not civilian contractors.
       
The two camera companies, RedFlex, and ATS are not talking about shutting down their systems.  They are still up and clicking in several parts of Maricopa County.
      
ATS does say it may get its workers licensed as Private Investigators.