LOS ANGELES - If a crosswalk light is flashing and you continue to cross the street - you could get a ticket that won't be cheap.
One man had a citation from a police officer that set him back $202.
"I actually didn't know that I was doing something wrong because I could see him. If I knew that it was wrong, I wouldn't have done it," Samuel Chu said.
But Jade Gaje, of Glendale, knew about the fine. Another woman said it was a lot of money to pay and people should pay attention.
But the Los Angeles Times reported that the police department issued 17,000 citations during a four-year period because current state law makes it illegal for a pedestrian to step into a crosswalk after the red hand starts flashing.
"It doesn't matter whether you live in downtown Los Angeles. It doesn't matter whether you live in Boyle Heights, or Pico-Union, or MacArthur Park - this affects you in a $200 ticket if you're the working poor," Assemblyman Miguel Santiago said.
Santiago wants to change what is on the books with AB90, which amends part of the state vehicle code. He, along with Councilman Jose Huizar, want pedestrians to be able to cross until the flashing light ends and the hand stops.
Gaje said that could be a scary change.
"Only because we live in Glendale and there's been a lot of high-fatality pedestrian accidents there," she said.
The lawmakers said Los Angeles is becoming a more walkable city, especially downtown, and they don't want to see pedestrians punished for not doing anything dangerous while in an intersection.
Assemblyman, LA councilman look to change pedestrian fines when crosswalk hand flashes