Woman fights New Miami speed-cameras, calls them 'unfair'

HAMILTON, Ohio - In November 2012, Hamilton resident Lara Rodeffer was driving down U.S. Route 127 in New Miami to pick up her daughter.

Two weeks later, Rodeffer received a ticket with a $95 fine in the mail.

A speed camera in the area had supposedly caught her speeding. It said she was going 49 mph in a 35 mph zone.

"I think it's all about making money," Rodeffer said. "I think they're taking advantage of an area that doesn't have a lot of money to fight it."

Rodeffer said she and about 50 other traffic violators appealed their tickets in December.

She claims the hearing was unfair. She thinks the situation is similar to the one in Elmwood Place, where a court decided the camera system was illegal because it violated motorists' due process.

In the appeal Rodeffer filed with Butler County Common Pleas Court, she states that when she initially went to contest her ticket with the village, she noticed if a driver had multiple tickets, all were erased but one. If a driver had one ticket, like Rodeffer did, that person had to pay the fine that was levied against them, which was raised to $120 in her case because of an additional $25 appeal fee.

Rodeffer put in paper work with the Butler County court despite the annoyance of the process and the hefty price tag that came along with it.

"[Someone with the court] said it's $300 to file. Like, they were already warning me at that point from New Miami's police that it's going to cost $300 to file," Rodeffer said.

In the past, village officials have defended the cameras on U.S. 127 by saying they weren't in place to be a moneymaker. They argued the cameras were to curb speeding incidents in dangerous areas.

As of February, more than $210,000 has been generated from citations since the cameras were installed last fall.

Rodeffer is waiting for New Miami officials to respond to a brief she filed so her legal case can move forward.

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