Gotcha!

Corporations and governments can legally ignore photo tickets in the Valley, while the rest of us are expected to pay up -- or else

The server paid a visit at 10:30 a.m. on New Year's Day.

Golusin and his wife, Marla, were at the gym working out. Their friend from Nevada, John Shebanow, was in town for the holidays and had spent the night at their home.

"He was a little hung over," Golusin says with a laugh.

Mike Maas
Francesca Cisneros achieved infamy last year after getting 70 photo-enforcement tickets.
Giulio Sciorio
Francesca Cisneros achieved infamy last year after getting 70 photo-enforcement tickets.

After the Golusins came home, Shebanow told them a man in a white shirt and tie showed up and began ringing the doorbell repeatedly. When Shebanow peered out through the blinds, the man became frustrated and started banging on the door, shouting, "Albert, I know you're in there!"

Shebanow didn't open up, and the man shoved some papers halfway under the front door. When Golusin saw it was his ticket, he called the court to complain he had been served improperly.

When he requested a copy of the affidavit of service from the court, Golusin saw the process server had sworn that he'd left the ticket with an adult female who lives at the house:

"After knocking she came to the window and looked out but refused to open the door after seeing me and stating my purpose. I secured the papers to the door," wrote server Danny Arnett.

Arnett listed the person he served as a Caucasian female about 56 years old, about five foot seven, and weighing 135 pounds. Shebanow was 38 and had a full beard.

As Golusin noted in his testimony at the hearing — which Arnett never showed up for — Arnett's description closely matched the details listed on Marla Golusin's driver's license. The implication was that Arnett wrote whatever he thought it would take to make his affidavit meet legal requirements, knowing that what he was stating was false.

Baca ruled that Arnett had violated court rules, and his license was later revoked. Court staff members say only one or two complaints about process servers come in each month. That figure rose slightly during the Loop 101 program, but most of the extra complaints were about Arnett, court staff says.

Arnett, a Gilbert resident, says that's not true. Other process servers have received far more complaints than he has, he says.

If the affidavit says a woman peeked out of the window of Golusin's house, that's what happened, and Golusin is a liar, Arnett says. Asked how he could have established that the woman, if that's who he saw, was a resident of the home, Arnett replies, "Here's how: Obviously people are very childish and try to hide between windows and doors and try to hide behind kids."

Ironically, given his former line of work, Arnett says he didn't attend the hearing because he wasn't notified properly — he says he never received the letter telling him the hearing date.

"The judge violated my civil rights," Arnett says. "The judge said it was certified mail, but was never able to produce a signature."

Golusin, for all his troubles, still had to pay his ticket.

"I went to the trial," he says. "I said, 'I don't think I should even be here.' [The judge] said, 'The person in the photo looks like you, and I think you should be here.' I said, 'Irrespective of that, I wasn't legally served. He said 'We're not going to talk about that today.'"

They didn't. Case closed.

"Unfortunately, it wasn't really worth my time and money to file an appeal," he says.

Whether or not a city judge gives you a fair shake on the question of proper service, filing a legitimate complaint against a process server is a good way to strike back at the photo-enforcement system.

Keeping process servers honest means more people will legally evade their tickets.


The best way to beat a photo ticket is not to get it in the first place.

Always drive less than 11 mph over the posted speed limit.

In school zones, don't exceed 15 mph.

Don't run red lights.

But if those precautions don't work out and you feel the warm touch of a traffic-camera flash, the citation may never come.

About half the violations recorded by photo-enforcement systems can't be used at all because of sun glare, focus problems, and other technical glitches. The system doesn't do well with big rigs, since the cameras are set up to frame the license plates of normal-size vehicles. Mexican license plate? No problema, amigo. The photo-enforcement company doesn't waste postage on such tickets.

The trick is to find your way into this rejected pile because of factors you can control.

For instance, motorcycle helmets don't just protect your brain in a crash — a good helmet makes face identification almost impossible.

Drivers have been photographed wearing masks while mooning or flipping off the camera at high speeds. Those pictures are forwarded to police, who may investigate repeat cases.

The most popular defensive tactic against traffic cameras (besides registering a vehicle to a corporation) is the clear or translucent license plate shield that has exploded in popularity in the last couple of years.

Then there's Photoblocker. Joe Scott of Phantom Plate in Virginia says his company has sold more than 500,000 cans of the clear spray that is supposed to reflect the light of a camera flash like a mirror, making the license plate unreadable. The company also sells plastic shields that purport to do the same thing.

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My Voice Nation Help
12 comments
dmsbayne
dmsbayne

Hers the deal, It is obvious that These cams are only for lining the pockets of those who are getting kick backs from the money made, ie. Scottesdale $800:000 in one year. If that is the case then fire two copes for every cam since we don't need them and they can eat their doughnuts at home. But most important is that driving should now be a right and to allow the MVD to dictate weather or not I can drive myself or a family member to the emergency room or to work or to get food for the babies is un American. Any one who believes that we shouldn't have the right to drive should get out of the USA. Its Big Brother just wanting to be in our business because its a drug to them. Do you realy think that those pics just go away. Does NSA mean anything. Get 30 or 40 of your friends with masks and coverd lic plates and all of you speed through a cam. Be safe though, and let the light show begin

forester74
forester74

I keep reading that after 120 days it is invalid.  And besides the city of Show Low is most likely not going to be connected with the DMV.  They only know the address associated with your vehicle.  After 4 months you are off the hook.

Seeley3
Seeley3

i need help i am moving to show low az. i was there 5 min. got to camera tickets .sent to me in new jersey. what do i do. i will eventually have to apply for az. licensce in 6 months.

greenspite
greenspite

Does anyone know if Arizona hires out of state process servers to go after arizona photo speeding tickets? I live in Florida, and got the photo ticket in Paradise Valley?

DavidKnows
DavidKnows

I don't understand, the Supreme Court has ruled that corporations have the political rights of people, so why don't they have the same legal consequences? Under the Citizens United decision they should be liable. Thank you, I just earned Arzona $5 million annually.

Jason Trenkler
Jason Trenkler

The whole thing is garbage, thank goodness that DPS is no longer using the photo radar vans.

goldnugg
goldnugg

I KNOW YOU CAN BE LEGALLY SERVED BY MAIL NOW BUT CAN IT BE LEGAL TO A MAIL BOX AT A AUXERLLY POST OFFICE???

beaner
beaner

Fuck the photo radar and west Mcdowell courts and lets not forget Judge Nap....ASSHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLE

Anonymous
Anonymous

Honestly, I don't think photo enforcement is a violation of an individual's rights. But the fact that you get charged $200+ with no warning notice sent makes it unfair in my opinion. They should send a warning notice for the first offense, and then like a $30 ticket on repeat offenses at the same location. That seems a lot more fair and would deter speeding, especially since a person charged would by then be surely aware of the speed limit.

Judy
Judy

Believe it or not, I was recently ticketed with photo radar on FLW while I was going 45 mph (the speed limit). The ticket I received said I was going 78 mph. I went to court, told the truth and paid $270.00 for my trouble of informing them that the machines are malfunctioning. I wonder, is this happening to anyone else?

Judy

Patti
Patti

I think the photo enforcement is a crock. It allows Scottsdale PD and DPS to be lazy in my opinion.

What type of analysis was done regarding the accidents on this particular stretch? Did the concept of vehicles going TOO slow and merging on the freeway play a role? And what about the concept of vehicles "cutting" over going too slow? All of these and other issues, I've experienced on this stretch of freeway and because of my alertness, was able to avoid the accident while the offending driver gets upset because I've honked my horn.

And what about the flashes? I can tell you, many of times, I've seen the flash, which has distracted my eyes from the road briefly, to make sure it wasn't me. That flash can be blinding at night.

I understand completely the concept of speed limits, however, the ONLY individuals affected by this photo radar are the ones that go more than 10 miles over the speed limit. NOTHING is done regarding those that can't even drive the speed limit or those that can't abide by any of the other road laws.

Am I angry? Yes! And yes, I was "caught" but the thing that gets me is the wording I received when I went to court to explain things. I can assure you, had there been an officer, one of the tickets would not be issued and the fact that the photo radar has a +/- 1 MPH accuracy issue and my "picture" indicated 76 MPH vs the 75 MPH, it seems to me, that +/- 1 MPH should be taken into consideration and when it's as close as mine was, to be quite honest, yes that would should have been dismissed, especially with the time of day, the amount of traffic and so forth.

To allow the corporate world to get off scott free while individuals, such as myself, be held accountable is unfair practice.

Billy
Billy

Yeah, just don't pay it... it goes away.

 
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