Arizona Photo Enforcement: Identify the Driver? Don't be a Schmuck

Our blog posts about beating photo-enforcement tickets have spurred a few comments like this one:

Walt says: Hello.

My wife made a right turn on red at one of Avondale's traffic lights. Received a violation notice in the mail to me since the vehicle is only registered to me. The picture shows her driving though. The notice wants me to identify the driver. Should I send it in and just wait for the ticket, or should I just not send it in and see what happens? Also are there any points involve here? Thank you for any help you can give me.

Posted On: Monday, Jul. 6 2009 @ 8:10AM

We can't tell for sure if Walt is seriously considering turning in his wife, but there's a name for people who identify friends and family members to photo-enforcement authorities: Losers.

If someone else gets an Arizona photo-enforcement ticket in a vehicle registered to you, you can go down to the court, prove it's not you in the violation picture and simultaneously decline to rat out the driver.

Case dismissed.

Of course, that's not as pure-hearted as simply failing to sign a waiver of proper service and waiting to see if a process server shows up at your home. You may even be put in the embarrassing position of having to lie to a court official, if the official asks you point-blank if you know the photographed driver.

But what about the ethics of snitching on your spouse or best friend, if they triggered an ATM [Automatic Ticket Machine] while cruising in your ride? We're not going to wait for Randy Cohen to answer this one.

It just isn't right.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.