We don't know the details yet. But I imagine Doug Georgianni as another struggling, underpaid guy trying to find that illusive Arizona dream. Now he's dead, a young 51. Three months ago he took a job servicing the speed cameras on Phoenix freeways. Sunday night, while parked on the Loop 101 near 7th Ave. in a marked Department of Public Safety photo enforcement van, Georgianni was shot multiple times. The suspect, since arrested, is a white male (of course) driving a Chevy Suburban (of course).
I never completely understood the loud controversy over speed and red-light cameras. Metro Phoenix has a horrendous problem of major traffic violators, fatal and often spectacular wrecks and pedestrian killings, many hit-and-runs. Meanwhile, the religion of tax cuts and Arizona's unwillingness to fund its public sector to keep up with population growth mean there aren't enough traffic officers. The problem is made worse, of course, by sprawl, huge freeways and eight-lane "city streets," plus a population driving giant vehicles they can't really control on streets with increasing numbers of pedestrians. Even the former Catholic bishop came to grief this way, and in his character-revealing response of driving away from the victim like so many other 'Zonies had done.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009