The Chief of Police in Colorado Springs responded to a number of questions regarding Traffic Ticket Quotas, and whether Police Officers operate on a Traffic Ticket Quota Basis. When asked directly about Traffic Ticket Quotas, the Chief responded: “By a ticket quota I assume you mean if there’s negative consequences against the police officers for writing a certain amount or more tickets, and that’s not the case.”
He was asked about whether there was a number of Traffic Tickets that he wanted his department to reach and the Police Chief responded with: “I talk to police officers in line-ups and to their bosses about either education, enforcement or engineering what we call the 3 E’s. So I do have conversations with staff, at least at the divisional level, of having an expectation of officers that when they do see dangerous situations they write a ticket if that’s acceptable and appropriate. I hold my Deputy Chief and command staff accountable for that, to make sure that that’s fair and it’s consistently applied. I want the message to be traffic enforcement not revenue, not ticket counts and things like that.”
The Police Chief stated that there were 14 Performance Objectives that Patrol Officers were evaluated on and Traffic Safety Standards was one of those Objectives. He stated that with increased Traffic, in 2014 he is expecting to see a 10% Increase in Traffic Stops. The Chief said their enforcement is based on High Traffic Accident Areas.
He said, “Traffic safety is not about numbers, it’s not about total number of tickets, it’s not about revenue at all. Our traffic accidents have gone up substantially in the last few years as well as fatalities, but the number of tickets we write have actually gone down. I think a lot of that has to do with the Waldo Canyon Fire, the Black Forest Fire, and lots of other more important business, even including flash floods and evacuations, so that’s most important but when there’s a time and place for it, I expect our officers do traffic enforcement.”
The Chief however, did admit to the fact that at one point in time there were Quotas within the Police Department. “A few years ago there was a performance expectation that on a standard 10-hour shift, an officer should make a quality moving violation, not a minor ticket or something that someone should get a warning for, but a quality moving violation about 1 per shift,” he said. “That was a few years ago, and we’ve gotten away from that.”
If you or someone you know has been stopped and received a Traffic Ticket in Greensboro, High Point or Asheboro – Guilford County or Randolph County, please contact our lawyers immediately.