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LAPD charging jaywalkers $191 in new crackdown

Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times

Pedestrians should think twice before jaywalking in downtown L.A. -- or they could walk away with a $191 fine.

During the busy holiday shopping season, the Los Angeles Police Department is ramping up a zero-tolerance policy for jaywalkers downtown, particularly the Historic Core area, as part of an effort to reduce accidents and prevent crime, officials said.

A citation won't be cheap, now costing $191.

"This is about more than reducing accidents during the holidays," said LAPD Lt. Paul Vernon. "This is about preventing thefts and robberies. Jaywalking is often done by thieves, purse snatchers and robbery suspects to target their victims."

Vernon said such criminals often suddenly see a potential target and run across the road mid-block. To be better able to spot such suspects, the department wants to deter law-abiding citizens from such behavior, he said.

"We will be watching; that is the message we want to get out there," Vernon said. Authorities said officers will paying particular attention to Spring and Main streets.

With the jump in pedestrians, the holiday season can be a deadly one. In 2009, Vernon said, there were three accidents involving a vehicle and a pedestrian in the downtown area between Nov. 25 and Dec. 31.

Two of those incidents were blamed on the person on foot and resulted in serious injury to the pedestrian, Vernon said. The third incident, which resulted in a pedestrian's death, was due to a speeding driver, he said.

The cost of tickets in Los Angeles has become an issue as officials increasingly turn to parking and traffic violations as a way to boost their depleted coffers. The ticket for an expired meter in Los Angeles jumped from $40 in 2008 to about $50 last year, and "fix-it" tickets for minor moving violations such as broken tail lights more than doubled.

News of the jaywalking crackdown was first reported in the Downtown News.


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Comments () | Archives (302)

Please. This is about raising revenue. A $50 fine would discourage enough people. $191 is simply outrageous. Another way to bay for bloated government and city workers salaries and pensions.

Couch it in any terms you want; it's about money, plain and simple. Downtown is a great place to fish for tickets as there are many fish.

To cite potential "jaywalking thieves" as the catalyst for increased jaywalking "scrutiny" shall we say, is a farce.

Sieg Heil, Chief Beck. Und next, zee vuns wit zee signs zaying, 'justice fur Manuel Jimenez Xum"

California uber Alles

This sounds fair to me, and hopefully it'll prevent some serious injuries. I just hope they'll be doing more than singling out pedestrians--I'd love to see daily crosswalk stings cracking down on motorists that blow through crosswalks at high speeds even when pedestrians are waiting to cross (or are in the process of crossing). Drivers' rampant disregard for crosswalks is at least as dangerous as jaywalking (and probably also a contributing factor in a lot of the jaywalking that goes on).

Nah, it's about generating revenue for a broke city. So, were suppose to believe L.A.P.D. This is about more than reducing accidents during the holidays," said LAPD Lt. Paul Vernon. I think the last paragraph pretty much summed it up.

Are the jaywalkers engaged in a commerce activity WHILE they're crossing the PUBLIC RIGHTS OF WAY...?
Nooooo... well then Mr. LA cop, SINCE you are the EMPLOYEE of a political CORPORATION which in legal terms is IDENTICAL to every other corporation registered in the US OR CA (check out "city of los angeles" on either Manta.com or Jigsaw.com (business searched)).
Since you Mr. Cop are working for a private political operation and if you RE-venue or attempt to RE-venue (i.e., Con) a protected class (Bill of Rights) Man, Woman or Child human from their protected status, then you have acted under colorable law and are fully liable to a claim. I'd say considering the lawyer costs to defend your offense, about $10,000 sounds about right enough to forgive you your TRESPASS!
PS: check out "judicial council of california" while you're at it... the judges THEMSELVES OWN every CA court! How's that for a bit of "impartial justice" FRAUD!?

Seriously? Stop wasting your time with pedestrians, who are mostly just risking their own lives, and start 'cracking down' on motorists that are driving recklessly, who are quite often risking the lives of many others. I've found in LA that reckless motorists are a dime a dozen... fill your coffers with their funds.

I hope this expands to other areas. I am tired of slamming on my brakes because a lazy pedestrian crosses the street wherever he/she likes instead of walking the extra 50 feet to the crosswalk.

I support the increased fine. Outstanding.

Raise your hand if you're dumb enough to believe that a $191 jaywalking ticket is about public safety.

AGAIN, we're being robbed by our own local governments using our law enforcement as the tool.

Our cops are there to take reports after a crime has occurred. Not rob citizens of their hard earned money for small infractions.

$191 is a LOT of money after taxes for many of us. That is 3 DAYS worth of pay for those on minimum wage.

For jaywalking? This is an abuse of authority plain and simple.

What a joke ! Public safety ??? What a joke, it's all about the money ! Look for more absurdity to come !!

Hey editors, the LAPD does not determine the cost of the fine; its written in the city ordinances and Penal Code. Change your misleading and erroneous headline. As it reads, it screams your anti-police bias (and your ignorance).

Yeah, right. I don't believe the LAPD's lies for a second. Jaywalking is not even illegal in Britain, Sweden, and Norway, to name a few.

GOOD! We're all getting tired of car damage fromw hitting these pedestrians.

Removing the hair and skin from the front grill gets annoying too!

When financial times are tough, the gov't puts the screws to the people. I don't remember being asked as a voting citizen if I wanted tougher jaywalking scrutiny and higher fines. People, you are being hosed and you just lay down and take it.

I think it's outrageous but I wouldn't mind as much if they used this money to fix the roads, I can't believe the amount of potholes, some of them huge and deep, I have to drive over every day. I just had to replace 2 pretty new tires, and one of them had numerous nails in it.

So the broke city of L.A. is looking for another revenue generating device to fund its exorbitant spending and poor budget planning. $191 is grossly excessive, considering that SSI believes the average senior can live off of $750/month.

Bet you won't see this kind of enforcement on Robertson Blvd between Melrose & 3rd Street! The "shoppers" cross mid block all the time, along with the paparazzo trying to chase wanna be celebs in the area. Never seen enforcement there, probably never will! ...and most of them CAN afford the fines. I'm jus' sayin'.

next time they want higher taxes for more police, PLEASE remember this article, plenty of police are available, its not a resource problem, its a deployment problem.

Just have LA send a bill to every person who lives in the city for $191 every month. Call it the Jay-walk free pass so no written ticket is necessary. What a great revenue enhancer: money without work! Such a program would allow the LAPD to concentrate resources on capturing the actual criminals pre-jay-walking. Tell the truth LA City Council. You guys lie with every breath.

Good for LAPD. Some of these folks need to get a ticket for being just plain stupid. Smart move to walk or run into traffic -- or behind a car that is backing up for that matter -- and just assume someone else is watching out for his or her well being. This used to be called personal responsibility. Now letting somebody else worry about your sorry tush masquerades as personal liberty. Folks who just willy-nilly walk into traffic get themselves hit and blame it on the driver or cause accidents between cars when one slams on the breaks to avoid a j-walker, then they just walk on. Bout time, LAPD.

Can you imagine if NYC enforced something like this. There would be riots.

Hey ....interested in really making an impact on traffic laws? How about ticketing people for no signaling. As an new resident to CA. this state is the worst. Had no idea directional on a Ca. auto were an option! Really, how tough is it to use your directionals?

I think this is great it's about time the city started cracking down on jay walkers. It just might save some lives.

Correction to the above:

During the busy holiday shopping season, the Los Angeles Police Department is ramping up a zero-tolerance policy for jaywalkers downtown, particularly the Historic Core area, as part of a shamefully blatant effort to extract additional revenue from the city's overtaxed, underemployed, utterly powerless citizens.

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