PA Turnpike Cracks Down On $17 Million In Unpaid Tolls

First criminal charges filed against delinquent drivers

Joe DeStio
May 14, 2018 - 6:27 pm
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PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) – It’s not going to be easy to pass through E-ZPass interchanges on the PA Turnpike anymore without having to eventually pay up.

The Turnpike Commission has launched the first 19 criminal prosecutions against drivers across the state who have failed to pay.

Compliance Chief Ray Morrow told KDKA Radio’s Joe DeStio Monday they are targeting the worst offenders first.

“We target the top 10 violators from each of our interchanges, and each one has to [owe] above $2,000,” Morrow said. “We’re looking at someone who has violated at least 100 times and has received over 200 notices and has failed to respond to anyone of those.”

Morrow says anything over $2,000 makes them felony charges. Morrow says the average fees owed by those facing criminal charges are between $12,000 and $15,000.

The turnpike has agreements to prosecute with 14 of 17 District Attorneys from counties the turnpike passes through, including Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zapalla. DA Zapalla has agreed to prosecute cases from the four interchanges in the county

The Turnpike is owed some $17 million in unpaid tolls.

Jennifer Bloodworth contributed to this article.