Todd Kochis shared this post via CopBlock.org’s submit page.
Irony in the City of Pueblo, Colorado where the Police Department refuses to acknowledge a citizen’s right to photo and video journalism, the same Police Department is assisting the city in what appears to be felony fraud of its citizens. The fraud would amount to more than $421,000.00 in tickets being issued using camera and video technology during 2011 and 2012.
The City of Pueblo, Colorado installed “Red Light Cameras” in 2009 and the Pueblo Police Department issues tickets to citizens’ who fail to stop for red lights and are captured on video. The city’s reasoning for the cameras is to increase safety, but the video below suggests it may be to increase revenue. In the video it appears the yellow light last for 3.5 seconds and not the standard 3.6 second guideline from the Colorado Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). This difference of 1/10 of a second is equal to approximately 5 feet 9 inches in distance at 35 MPH. Other recordings, in my possession, show “non-camera” intersections meeting the standards set forth by the MUTCD.
In the 2012 Pueblo Police Department Annual Report, the Pueblo Police Department omits mention of a reduction in accidents for the camera targeted intersections. Further, the 2011 Pueblo Police Department Annual Report acknowledges success and states, “There was also a 40% reduction in the number of broad-side accidents at these intersections with a 16% increase in rear-end collisions, indicating more drivers slowing for the yellow light.” As you can see, this statement again omits mentions of a reduction in total accidents, only an increase of rear-end collisions supporting the shorter, non-standard, yellow light intervals seen in the video above. These non-standard yellow light intervals may lead to serious injury or even death; I question if the City of Pueblo and the Pueblo Police Department consider $421,000.00 in revenue more important than a citizen’s life?
I have always believed, “Photography is NOT a Crime,” however, in the City of Pueblo, Colorado it just may be a crime.
The Pueblo Police Department Public Information Officer (PIO) is: Sergeant Eric Gonzales.
Sergeant Gonzales’ contact information is as follows: Office – (719) 553-2582 Cell – (719) 568-8939
Sources: Listed in the video description