CHICAGO (WGN-TV) — A couple says the City of Chicago is coercing them into paying a red light ticket for a car that isn’t theirs.
Steve Stallings and his wife, Celeste Galizia, received a $100 red light violation in the mail four months ago. The catch is that the car on camera isn’t theirs, and they say the camera misread the plate.
The license plate shown in the photo starts with the letters “CE.” Stallings and Galizia said their plate starts with “CL.”
“It’s clearly not ours,” Scalling said. “We weren’t there or nothing. It’s got a Kansas City Chiefs decal on it, and we wouldn’t own one of those.”
The couple, who live in a suburb outside Chicago, appealed the violation, but a judge ruled against them. After that, they sent the Department of Finance proof the car and plate isn’t theirs through the mail, but it was also refused and sent back.
“We’re completely innocent, yet they want us to jump through hoops,” Scalling said.
Where it stands today, the fine has doubled and gone to collections.
“We’ve proven to them that this was not the license plate, yet nobody’s responding,” Galizia said. “But this case should be closed, and we should not have to pay the fine.”
Nexstar’s WGN reached out to the Department of Finance for comment. The department said they would look into this but had not followed up as of Wednesday.