7/12/2008Colorado Springs Ticket Quota Uncovered
Ticket quota drives Colorado Springs, Colorado officers to falsify their daily activity reports.
News organizations in Colorado Springs, Colorado this week uncovered a ticket quota that drove a pair of cops to falsify speeding ticket records. Officers Dan Myers and Elvin Hill were not accused of ticketing innocent motorists. Instead, they issued 197 citations but claimed credit for 407 in their official Daily Activity Report database entries between January 2 and February 12 this year.
Their actions suggested a ticket quota to the Colorado Springs Gazette and KRDO television, who put in requests for departmental records. They discovered a number of documents outlining "Performance Objectives" that said "Officers will average a minimum of 2.2 violations" per hour. That means officers on ten-hour shifts had to write 22 tickets per day. Departmental supervisors said this was an easy burden for officers.
"I've had several guys that write more than several times that," Sergeant Steve Weber told the Gazette. "The majority of these guys don't even have to worry about these numbers. These are really for our low performers."
Still, officials denied that this requirement amounted to a ticket quota designed solely to raise revenue. In 2005, the number of citations jumped twelve percent, generating $8.6 million in revenue as the number of accidents also rose fifteen percent.
Myers and Hill retired on July 2, avoiding any sanction for their actions.