8/12/2006Rocklin, CA Police Hold Ticket Writing Contest
Rocklin, California police fire officer who exposed a ticket writing contest designed to increase citation revenue.
The traffic enforcement shift in the Rocklin, California Police Department that issued the greatest number of red light camera tickets won a prize, according to a lawsuit filed by a twenty-year veteran of the force. Officer Rick Eaton called it a ticket quota, and for that he was fired.
"To inflate these (ticket) numbers, the department began offering a benefit, and that benefit was in the form of a free dinner for the entire shift that could write the most tickets for red light violators," Eaton told KOVR-TV in an interview. "I felt that was very inappropriate and I had a hard time supporting that."
Police officials denied there was a ticket quota, because quotas are illegal. Instead, to show Eaton was not fired over the ticket quota, officials released documents showing Eaton had maligned the police chief and been argumentative.