Tickets written by MHP in St. Louis City to be prosecuted - KMOV.com

Tickets written by MHP in St. Louis City to be prosecuted

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A ticket written by Missouri Highway Patrol. Credit: KMOV A ticket written by Missouri Highway Patrol. Credit: KMOV
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

If you've gotten a highway patrol speeding ticket in St. Louis recently get ready to pay up.

Earlier this month, a News 4 investigation revealed thousands of tickets were in legal limbo because no one was prosecuting them.

Now, that's all changed.

“In effect those tickets became orphans and we have decided to adopt those orphans,” said Julian Bush, the St. Louis City Counselor.

Bush says his office will now begin prosecuting the more than 4,500 tickets highway patrol troopers have written in St. Louis since July.

The tickets had been in a legal limbo of sorts after Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner told News 4 her office did not have the resources to prosecute them.

“That is clearly an unfunded mandate,” said Circuit Attorney Gardner.

Gardner says she wasn't consulted before Governor Eric Greitens and Mayor Lyda Krewson implemented the plan over the summer. They said it’s an effort to curb crime.  

"I think the citizens elected me to handle the violent cases, not municipal traffic violations," Garner says.

Gardner says pleas for more resources fell on deaf ears.

“We were told, ‘sorry,’” she said.  

Last week, the Circuit Attorney asked the Attorney General for help with the tickets and in the meantime, her office stacked the tickets in a banker's box and dropped them at the city counselor's office.

“We are delighted to prosecute people for city charges,” Bush said.

Bush says they're set up to handle them and will. They've just got to work out a few kinks to convert the tickets from state charges to municipal ones.

“Converted is not a legal term, but close enough,” Bush said.

One big bonus to his office prosecuting them, the city banks the revenue, not anyone in Jefferson City.

Kim Gardner has an idea for that, too.

“We need money and we can use a portion of that money for body cams,” said Gardner.

The city counselor says if you got a ticket expect more information in the mail in the next few weeks.

The Circuit Attorney said Thursday they “appreciate the cooperation of the Missouri Highway Patrol and the City Counselor’s Office on this matter.” 

Copyright 2017 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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