An appellate court has dismissed a claim by an Atlantic City police officer that she was unfairly targeted for a speeding ticket in Egg Harbor Township.
In a decision issued June 14, state Superior Court upheld fines levied against Michele Zanes for speeding and failure to exhibit a driver’s registration certificate — a $155 fine and $33 in court costs for each violation — stemming from a July 2009 traffic stop on the Black Horse Pike.
According to court records, the same Egg Harbor Township officer stopped Zanes for speeding in November 2008, but she was given a warning. This time, the officer testified that his radar unit showed her vehicle traveling 65 mph in a 45-mph zone, in an area where a pedestrian had recently been struck and killed.
Zanes appealed a municipal court decision, claiming that she was targeted in retaliation for a previous lawsuit she filed against Atlantic City and alleging that Egg Harbor Township police destroyed audio recordings of radio transmissions of the July 2009 stop.
Zanes was awarded a $750,000 settlement in 2008 after she filed a lawsuit alleging sexual and religious harassment, discrimination and a hostile work environment over six years working at the Atlantic City Police Department.
A second lawsuit filed in 2011, in which Zanes alleged continued discrimination, hostile work environment and retaliation based on the prior settlement, is pending. Zanes cites the 2009 traffic stop in that suit.
Zanes and her attorney, Timothy McIlwain, did not respond to requests for comment Friday.
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