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A New Jersey woman spent the night in jail after a ticket she received way back in 2002 came back to haunt her.

When she was 17, Krystle Garcia was cited by New York police for not having her insurance card. She never paid the fine, but was able to renew her license and commute to New York for the subsequent decade. Everything seemed fine until she was stopped at a checkpoint and had her license randomly scanned. The scan showed that Garcia had an outstanding summons, so she was arrested on the spot.

Even though Garcia had long forgotten about the ticket, the state of New York did not.

"It was horrifying," Garcia told NBC 4 in New York. "I sat in a holding cell for 14 hours with people who had gun charges, who were fighting each other."

"I've received tickets in New York and I've paid them. Couldn't they have just impounded my car instead of taking me, and putting me with other people who commit actual crimes?"

Garcia ended up settling in court and paying a $155 fine, but not until after she suffered through a long and frightening ordeal.

Moral of the story: Pay your fines, folks. The government has a long memory.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 389 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      The only "mora"l way would have been this: the police could have simply reminded her about her outstanding dues, updated her contact information, and warned her of possibly being arrested if she had failed to clear the fine.
      amavel
      • 3 Years Ago
      It most certainly cost them more than $155 to jail her overnight.
      • 3 Years Ago
      why do the comments about the police checkpoints and "random license scan[s]" keep being deleted?
      • 3 Years Ago
      Putting people in jailm for unpaid tickets is bull. No wonder prisons are overcrowded. 10+ years. You'd thin the gov't would have gotten to her earlier. Bah. Buit, hey, the gov't has no prob letting actual criminals free.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Jail and prison are not the same thing. Most likely she was put in a holding cell.
      ty
      • 3 Years Ago
      Aren't court notices by mail required for body attachments there?
        tfast23620
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ty
        do you know that court notices weren't sent?
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ty
        This is not a court notice with body attachment. The notice to appear( traffic ticket, summons) is the court notice. The failure to appear or failure to pay results in an arrest or bench warrant which is a court order signed by a judge directed to any police officer in NYS to arrest this defendant and bring that person before the court. No discretion . See my above post.
        GOODDOC1
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ty
        You sound like you have a legal background. How can a charge like this rate a ststute of limitation of 10 years?
      lken06880
      • 3 Years Ago
      Who is she trying to kid, she got the ticket, didn't pay it and this is what happens, I guess because she from Jersey the NY cops should give her a pass, I say put the lying cow in jail for 3 months and I'll bet she never forgets to pay another ticket. What a fool she make of herself.
      Bughowzer
      • 3 Years Ago
      stupid is as stupid dose
      • 3 Years Ago
      maybe next time you'll pay your fine huh? Oh well you lost. I've been in the slammer too long ago. Do the crime the long arm of the law will get you. you only get off free if your in govermant he he . Quit crying.
        • 3 Years Ago
        What crime was committed? She didnt steal or kill. I truly question the legalilty of these so -called checkpoints. Its one thing to find a terrorist or serious criminal, but as someone else posted - if NYS wasstupid enough to allow her to renew her license after all these years - then it really is not her fault per se.
      gbp91
      • 3 Years Ago
      no kidding. too bad for her.
      rdropout
      • 3 Years Ago
      don,t our children and grand children have enough stupid stuff to pay for. just think how much that cost the tax payers . they know where she lived, I don,t know why he couldn,t have just told her if the fine plus penality wasn,t paid with in 14 days she would be going to jail. people can come here illeagl but thats ok but if you live and work here and pay taxes, do one little thing and end up with a record. we waste more taxes on piddle little crimes, and then don't have money to prosecute people who steal our identies and money & HAVE TO PUT THE VICTUMS ON WELFARE AND FOOD STAMP. SOMITHING HAS TO GIVE WITH SOME OF ARE LAWS.
      xraybrain
      • 3 Years Ago
      well, the big problem I see here is....lets just say she did pay the fine years ago and it was never posted to the computer. There should be a statute of limitations that would ensure that a fine "paid" a decade ago will not come back to haunt you. I don't think most people save cancelled checks that long.
      drkmck
      • 3 Years Ago
      So, let me see...does this mean that anyone who doesn't pay a ticket after 10 years should just have it ignored when a cop stops the car and finds the outstanding ticket? Uhmm, it IS a REAL crime. I love how people who get caught believe that they're being picked on. They clearly tell you on the ticket, and on the 2nd and third requests that they also send out, that your car can be impounded and you can be arrested. This woman who was once 17 does not get my sympathy 10 years later. She should have paid the ticket. At what point do we say that someone should catch a break? And which someones? Which crimes? Who gets to choose? Give me a break.
        rudimario
        • 3 Years Ago
        @drkmck
        Here's to hoping they break down your door at 3am, take you into custody.....lock you away for 24 hours and you become someones butt buddy.. Then they find out they have the wrong person.....what's ya gonna do then? lol
        underdoneone
        • 3 Years Ago
        @drkmck
        Obama gets to chose.
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