ABC7 WATCHDOG

Group calls for audit of Morningside speed cams

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MORNINGSIDE, Md. (WJLA) - It's a big controversy surrounding a small town in Prince George's County and it's centered around two speed cameras near Joint Base Andrews.

Last October, the ABC7 News Watchdog Team raised questions about the legality of the cameras. Maryland law requires them to be in a school zone, but the county did not designate this stretch of Suitland Road as such and told Morningside that permission "cannot be approved"

After our report, our news partner WTOP spent months investigating the accuracy of the cameras after videos were posted on YouTube appearing to show people triggering the camera when driving slower than the proper speed.

AAA Mid-Atlantic has since called for an external audit of Maryland speed cameras, says spokesman John Townsend. In the last fiscal year, the cameras collected nearly a half million dollars. The town of Morningside's attorney told WTOP and Triple-A to pay for a review themselves.

"The onus is on the city to prove that the cameras are properly calibrated and they're not falsely ticketing motorists," explained John Townsend, AAA Mid Atlantic spokesperson.

The town's lawyer did not respond to a request for comment, but tells WTOP the town stands by the program.

A state delegate tells WTOP she's open to the state chipping in on an audit. But for now, legal or not, the cameras are active and issuing tickets.

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