Arizona's highway speed camera system is not only saving lives, but also helping bring criminal speeders to justice, says the Department of Public Safety.
The latest DPS news release (scroll down for the full text) about photo enforcement continues the agency's tack of trying to combat some of the negative news stories about the statewide system. DPS touted the safety angle in late December, claiming the system saves about three lives a month.
Prepare to see more speed cameras on collision-rich sections of the state's freeways and highways, the agency says.
DPS also says today that troopers arrested three Phoenix men in the last week on suspicion of criminal speeding, which the news release says is evidence that "enforcement works." The men were recorded flying past 100 mph in the city on multiple occasions, DPS states. Two were busted at home, while troopers nabbed the third at work. Cameras caught one of them, 24-year-old Marco Ibarro, traveling at 120, 121 and 113 mph while chatting on his mobile phone. .
Ignoring the tickets doesn't work if you're going that fast, apparently.
DPS news release follows:
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Arizona Department of Public Safety makes three separate arrests for Reckless driving/Criminal Speeding with the assistance of Photo Enforcement
Fatal collisions decreased from 21 to 12 for same time period from 2007-2008
The Arizona Department of Public Safety is seeing significant changes in traffic flow in the Phoenix-metro area as a result of Photo Enforcement. DPS statistics show that in the first three months of the expanded program from October 1, 2008 through December 31, 2008, there were 12 fatal collisions. In the same three month period in 2007, there were 21 fatal collisions in the Phoenix-Metro area.
The department's Mobile Enforcement Units will increasingly be deployed in high collision areas statewide. We expect to see collision reductions consistent with previous statistics. In addition to reducing speeds on the highways, photo enforcement is proving effective in assisting officers with apprehending major violators at extremely high speeds.
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Ongoing apprehensions of major violators are further evidence enforcement works. DPS recently arrested three suspects for reckless driving and criminal speeding. Video and photos of the suspects are available on request.
Casey William Krouth, 21, Phoenix was arrested at home on February 17, 2009 and booked into the Maricopa County Jail. Mr. Krouth was captured on photo enforcement cameras three different times on January 26, 2009 on U.S. 60 at milepost 180. His highest speed was 107 mph.
Mario Tapia Espinoza, 36, Phoenix was arrested at his place of employment and booked into the Maricopa County Jail on February 10, 2009. Mr. Espinoza was booked on three counts of criminal speeding and three counts of reckless driving. The violations occurred on November 11, 2008. on State Route 101 at mileposts 17, 19 and 22. The speeds were 110, 103 and 100 mph.
Marco A. Ibarra, 24, Phoenix was arrested at home and booked into the Maricopa County Jail on February 11, 2009 for three counts of criminal speeding and three counts of reckless driving and three counts of Endangerment. The violations occurred on February 1, 2009 on U.S. 60 at mileposts 178, and Interstate 10 at mileposts 150 and 151. The speeds were 121, 120 and 113 mph. It should be noted Mr. Ibarra was on the phone at the time.