Under California law, red light camera tickets may only be issued if the driver is clearly visible in the photograph. Positive identification is required because the driver, who may not be the registered owner, will have a point assessed against his license. MRCA decided it did not want to pay Redflex for verifying photographs of drivers and instead called the $175 citations “administrative penalties.” This arrangement allowed the agency to avoid splitting fine revenue with the state government. Motorist Danny Everett argued that was illegal.
Translation: the identity defense may be going away.
How this effects California motorists: As it stands now, if you get your picture taken by one of those Orwellian cash machines, the state mails you the ticket. However, they only mail you the ticket if the photo of the driver is of decent quality – enough to be able to ID the driver. With this ruling, the court may feel empowered to chuck that standard right out the window. Justice: defenestrated!