by Jessica Daley
If you get a ticket from a traffic camera, you have the chance to appeal it. Over the past few months in Des Moines, more and more people are choosing to do just that.
The latest numbers from October show nearly 5,800 tickets were dished out in Des Moines from red light cameras, the I-235 speed cameras and the mobile speed camera.
One of those was to Joshua Stubblefield. "I noticed the bulb going off and so I was pretty sure I got the ticket," he said.
But he'd already forgotten about it when the ticket showed up in the mail. The I-235 camera clocked his vehicle going 73 mph in a 60 mph zone.Once he saw the date and time on the notice, he knew he had to appeal it.
"Life or death situation. There was a premature baby being born. I was the on-call physician at Broadlawns," Stubblefield explained. "I didn't feel I was driving recklessly, I didn't run any red lights so I thought I had a good enough case to argue it."
He was right. At his Wednesday morning hearing, the hearing officer overturned his violation.
Nineteen other people tried to appeal their tickets at this hearing. That's up from 14 last month and just three in October.
Stubblefield said the appeal process was worth going through to save him the $65 fine. "That took about 20 minutes. Quick and easy."
Two people review the violation before mailing out the ticket, but mistakes do happen. Ernest Stewart said he got his ticket thrown out because it shouldn't have even gone to him. The license plate picture was blurry and his license plate was one digit off.