CCPD Info on Red Light Tickets – Pay Attention!

In light of the decision made by the City of Los Angeles City Council to discontinue its red light camera program and the confusion this has caused, the Culver City Police Department is providing information on Culver City’s program.

The Culver City Red Light Photo Enforcement program became fully operational in February 2000. Currently, nine intersections are equipped, totaling 20 approaches with this technology.
The City of Culver City utilizes a different system than the system used by the City of Los Angeles. Each incident is carefully reviewed and scrutinized by a sworn Police Officer to ensure that a violation has occurred and that all requirements of the California Vehicle Code have been met.

Once a citation has been sent to the violator, the violator is responsible to pay the fine and/or respond to the Los Angeles County Superior Court, in Santa Monica regarding the alleged violation. Failure to do so can result in the Court forwarding the citation to a collections agency and/or a hold may be placed on the violator’s driver’s license through the Department of Motor Vehicles, unlike the process in Los Angeles.

It is the Police Department’s intent to reduce incidents of red light violations and maximize traffic flow by maintaining the community’s red light camera program and traffic safety operations in general. Drivers should be aware that there are consequences for ignoring a red light camera citation issued by the Culver City Police Department.

For further questions, contact the Culver City Police Department’s Photo Enforcement Unit, Sergeant Omar Corrales, at (310) 253-6260.

www.culvercitysymphony.org

9 Comments

  1. Personally, I am a big fan of these cameras. I live where Machado Road meets up with Sepulveda Blvd. next to Temple Akiba. Before the red light camera was installed we had difficulty getting out of our complex during heavy traffic because people would block the intersection. Since the camera was installed, it has been much easier to cross Sepulveda because people are obeying the law.

  2. I never thought of that Christine, good point! Of course, no cameras, tickets, or fines would be necessary if drivers just stopped when they’re supposed to stop. hmmm…

  3. Well, in a way I’m glad to hear this info. I received one of these camera tickets at Washington and Helms. Although it was late at night, no one was around, and I didn’t want the food on my passenger seat to go flying – there was no doubt I was guilty! I went to court to see about objecting to the amount of the fine and it turned out not to be worth it — so I paid — more than $500!

    Turns out that the judge only has control over a small portion of the $500 for the actual infraction – there are various other fees that he/she cannot waive. Just FYI. Thanks for this article.

  4. Sherman Ellison, a star L.A. attorney and longtime skeptic of the Superior Court’s biggest moneymaker — traffic tickets — says that, in his exhaustive search for an answer to this question, he has deduced that:

    “It won’t go on your DMV record. It won’t go on your credit record. But it will remain in Superior Court as an unresolved matter.”

    So, in choosing whether or not to pay your humongous, highly irritating $470 ticket, “it’s a function of whether the person who receives a ticket is willing to walk this line that has a lack of clarity to it.”

    Here’s what happens to your ticket, once that beady little stoplight lens does its job.

    Ellison says that when a city issues the ticket, it goes straight to the L.A. County Superior Court. The court then puts it in their traffic record system. If you havent responded to the ticket by its due date, you’ll receive a letter saying that within a few weeks, a $300 civil-assessment fine will be added to the existing $470. If you ignore that letter, the Superior Court tacks on the $300 and sends it to GC Services, its official collection agency. GC Services then sends you a collection letter, making super scary threats about what will happen if you don’t pay your $770 bill. (Aka, garnish your wages or file a lien on your house.) Ignore that letter, and they’ll send you another, filled with even scarier threats.

    But from there, the Los Angeles Times reports that GC Services is instructed not to send it to the nation’s three credit-reporting agencies:

    Under state law, court officials have discretion over how they pursue those who do not respond to camera-generated citations. Los Angeles County Superior Court officials, as a matter of fairness, said that for the last decade they have chosen a less forceful approach partly because the person receiving the ticket may not be the person who was driving the car. …
    The court may seek payments via collection agencies, but failures to pay do not show up on personal credit reports [or DMV records], court officials said. The policy applies to tickets received throughout Los Angeles County, said Greg Blair, the court’s senior administrator for traffic operations.

    Neither Ellison nor the Weekly has been able to confirm this with GC Services, where reps refuse to answer the credit question. Instilling more fear is a new message on the Superior Court’s website that reads: “Anyone issued a red-light citation must resolve it within the specified time limits or face certain penalties as prescribed by law.”

    But that’s vague — and likely only posted in last-ditch hopes that the most freaked out of the violators will fork over the court’s much-needed cash, just to qualm their nerves.

    In July, L.A. City Councilman Paul Koretz said of GC Services, “They’ll never actually make you pay, and they won’t put it on your credit.” And to this day, L.A. City Councilman Dennis Zine sings a similar tune, adding that the tickets definitely won’t show up on your DMV record.

    Phew! In conclusion: You do not have to pay your red-light-camera tickets, as previously reported. The only consequence we’ve been able to identify, so far, is that the ticket will remain in Superior Court, in awkward limbo, for court personnel to view.

    L.A. Superior Court communications director Mary Hearn tells us that once your ticket makes it to court, it is out of a city’s hands. So the above advice applies to all red-light-camera tickets in Culver City, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood and the rest of L.A. County, even though their camera programs are still in place.

  5. Don’t Pay!!! These fines are “voluntary” according to the LA City Council. The only way to get the cameras removed is if you boycott the fines.

  6. Another local gov. trying to money grab. If an officer cited you for red light it would cost nowhere near that price. Police wonder why people hate and don’t trust them? Lol you want a weeks worth of my hard earned money for a 2second mistake. Truly amazing.

  7. I just had a run-in with the Culver City Red light system. Making a left turn at Washington and Overland. One car in front of me, way out into the intersection, me pulled up behind him and other people behind me. I sat there for almost the entire green light and traffic was so heavy, no one could turn until it turned red. The camera flashed. There was no way around it. I rarely have this happen but today at 5 pm the traffic was a steady stream and no turning arrow. So in reality, they’re giving out tickets knowing full-well that there will be many. You’re damned if you don’t and damned if you do in this case. Not even one car can turn left in this situation. This is entirely unfair. I’m sure now I’ll have to deal with the agony of deciding whether or not to pay. I’m responsible and have had no tickets, not even in Culver City. But this is total BS. I didn’t run a red light. I sat through the green and was the second car through the red because staying parked in the intersection after the light turns isn’t an option.

  8. Please boycott Culver City! Don’t eat there.
    Don’t buy anything there. Stay away from Culver City
    that’s the only way to handle the red light camera
    situation. Boycott Culver City!

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