Regional
2:47 pm
Tue May 3, 2011

Las Cruces Begins Seizing Vehicles With Unpaid Tickets From "Red Light" Cameras

Las Cruces – The Las Cruces Police Department will begin seizing or immobilizing vehicles whose owners are in default of the Safe Traffic Operations Program, the city's photo enforcement camera ordinance.

Under the provisions of the ordinance, police "may seize or immobilize a vehicle for 90 days" if its owner has failed to pay fines received from the photo enforcement cameras. If the vehicle's owner fails to settle the default, and pay all impound and storage fees within the 90 days, the vehicle is subject to forfeiture under the city's ordinance.

Currently, there are 24 vehicle owners who have at least nine unpaid citations for speeding or running a red light at intersections monitored by the photo enforcement cameras. The top 24 violators owe the city $25,514 in fines.

The ordinance's top scofflaw has 15 unpaid citations from the photo enforcement cameras and owes the city $1,875 in fines and fees.

The ordinance stipulates that the registered owner of a vehicle caught violating the law has 35 days to pay the fine, identify of the driver who was at fault or request a hearing to appeal the violation. The registered owner of the vehicle is in default if he or she fails to comply with those stipulations.

Las Cruces currently has five cameras at three intersections that monitor traffic for speeding and red light violations. The photo enforcement cameras are at Lohman Avenue at Telshor Boulevard, Lohman Avenue at Walnut Street, and Valley Drive at Avenida de Mesilla.

Photo enforcement fines are $100 each.