Bucks County DA's Office teams up with Pa. Turnpike to crack down on toll cheaters

Jim Melwert
February 26, 2020 - 3:43 pm

Mike Dougherty | KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The Pennsylvania Turnpike is teaming up with the Bucks County District Attorney's Office to crack down on people who are skipping out on tolls. 

The DA’s office has focused efforts on catching turnpike toll cheats for the past few years, but now they’re starting a special investigative unit to crack down.

Turnpike CEO Mark Compton says they realize people might go through the wrong lane by accident, or maybe they don’t realize their E-ZPass isn’t working. 

He says this isn’t about them. 

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"There’s also a group who refuse to pay their tolls time and time again and have racked up thousands upon thousands of dollars in unpaid tolls. For those at that level, this matter is now criminal," Compton said.

Turnpike officials say toll violators in Montgomery and Bucks counties account for more than half the violations statewide, estimating more than $21 million in unpaid tolls.

Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub says with a grant from the turnpike commission, his office has hired another detective and attorney to focus on felony investigations after someone racks up $2,000 of outstanding fines.

"You can maybe say you didn’t know once, but to say you didn’t know 800 times, that defies logic and imagination," Weintraub said.