In Saint Louis, Missouri, a man was recently put behind bars for failing to pay a $10 traffic ticket.
The story is so hard to believe, the city prosecutor created a new policy just to ensure that it never happens again.
Nicholas Durrell had never been arrested, but he soon learned all about the process when he was cuffed and jailed twice due to failing to appear in Florissant Municipal Court to pay a $10 ticket for not wearing his seat belt.
His story began almost four years ago. Mr. Durrell paid a speeding ticket online, but insisted there was no record of the seat belt citation, so he never paid for that violation.
Durrell told News 4, “I was very much under the assumption that I was finished with it.”
However, Florissant Municipal Court records still showed he had an unpaid $10 ticket.
Consequently, on June 20, 2011––the day after he failed to appear in court––the judge signed a warrant for his arrest.
Mr. Durrell did not know about the warrant until a police officer pulled him over in Maryland Heights in early February for driving on expired plates.
According to Mr. Durrell, “The officer asked me to step out of the vehicle, told me to put my hands behind my back. I was under arrest … he searched me.”
He was taken to the Maryland Heights Jail where he waited more than four hours before being picked up. Then, he was in Florissant police custody for an hour and a half.
Mr. Durrell spent a total of six hours in handcuffs or in a jail.
Although this did not happen in New Jersey, it really could have happened anywhere and to anyone.
Whenever you are issued a traffic ticket, be sure to reach out to an experienced traffic ticket attorney who can help you make sense of what you are facing.
Sometimes officers forget to issue you tickets that end up in their electronic system and mistakes happen.
Do not let these mistakes lead to you having a warrant out for your arrest for something you never even did.
His team of skilled traffic ticket attorneys will fight to keep you out of jail, on the road, and paying as little in fines and auto insurance hikes possible.