Missouri Supreme Court Deems St. Louis Red Light Safety Camera Ordinance Invalid, as Written

Court Suggests Photographs to Prove Driver Identity

August 18, 2015 | 2 min reading time
ST. LOUIS –The Missouri Supreme Court today ruled that while red light safety cameras and speed cameras are permissible law enforcement tools, cities must meet a more rigorous burden of proof in its camera prosecutions. 

The Court's rulings in the City's case and two other camera decisions issued today confirm that the use of photo and video evidence does not conflict with state law. It also provided guidance on how to administer a photo enforcement program.

"When we appealed this decision, we hoped to obtain a clear direction from the Supreme Court, and that's what we received," Deputy City Counselor Michael Garvin said. "The City's goal from the outset has been to utilize technology in a way that allows us to make optimal use of police manpower while at the same time safeguarding individuals' constitutional rights. We will work with the Board of Aldermen to prepare a new ordinance that complies with the Court's rulings."

The City of St. Louis's red light safety camera program has been a very effective safety tool. Red light running has gone down significantly in intersections with cameras. The low recidivism rate is more evidence of the cameras' effectiveness. Furthermore, red light safety cameras serve as an additional tool to help solve crimes.

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