ESL faces speed camera ticket lawsuits

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. - People who paid speeding tickets in East St. Louis' construction zone are now going after the city to get their money back. They've filed class action lawsuits in both Missouri and Illinios.

A lawyer representing 15 people in Illinois cited a 5 on Your Side investigation into the speeding tickets in his class action lawsuit. We began investigating after a viewer contacted 5 on your side investigator Farrah Fazal.

We first reported the tickets were illegal three weeks ago after St. Clair County State's Attorney Brendan Kelly told us the company the city hired to administer the radar ticket program didn't "have the authority to do this."

Chief Michael Floore told us the program was essential to crack down on all the speeders who run through the construction zone and run the danger of hitting workers. We also saw Floore dismiss several tickets at city hall the day we interviewed him.

Viewers wanted to know why theirs couldn't be dismissed as well. We went back to City Hall a week later to the mayor. He told us he was suspending the ticket program and working with Kelly to make it legal. The program would have to go through the court system and give speeders the chance to fight their ticket in court.

Ten days ago, Denise Durako got a letter telling her to show up for her ticket hearing in East St. Louis in August. This after the mayor told 5 on Your side he'd suspended the program.

"To claim the program is suspended when it's not," was a problem for Eric Rhein. He's representing Durako and 15 others who filed a class action lawsuit against the city. He cited the 5 on Your side investigation in his lawsuit.

"They issued phony tickets and collected a lot of money," said Rhein.

Another lawsuit is filed in Missouri. Rhein is convinced he can convince a judge to make the city dismiss the tickets and pay back the money.

5 on Your Side called Mayor Alvin parks to get his reaction to the lawsuits. He referred all questions about the lawsuit to the city's lawyer. We've left a message for Mike Wagner and waiting to hear back from him.

For information about the Missouri lawsuit, call Cary and Danis Law Practice at 800-721-2519. For information about the class action lawsuit in Illinois, call Eric Rhein at 618-394-9230.


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