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Diary of a checkpoint nightmare

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  • Diary of a checkpoint nightmare

    http://nctimes.com/articles/2008/08/...9d005cdc8b.txt

    OCEANSIDE ---- Tammy Bridges' problem with traffic checkpoints has nothing to do with racial profiling.

    It's not about civil liberties, either.

    Instead, it's their cost ---- a lesson she learned after paying $591 for being four months' overdue in renewing her driver's license.

    "It's so excessive," said the stay-at-home mother of two. "The average family doesn't have that kind of money to spare, and we barely did ourselves."

    Bridges said she forgot to renew her driver's license, which expired Jan. 2. She said she had gotten a renewal notice in December, but it got lost in the holiday shuffle of gifts, parties and working her at-home job, which she said picks up significantly during the holidays.

    She said she didn't realize the oversight until April 16 ---- when she happened to get stopped at a traffic checkpoint on Melrose Drive. After checking her driver's license and seeing it had expired, an officer asked her to step out of the car.

    "Are you taking me to jail?" Bridges asked.

    "No, we're taking your car to jail," she said the officer replied.

    The process is the same for everyone with an expired license, no matter how long it is past its renewal date, Oceanside police Lt. Kelan Poorman said.

    If the driver is alone, police confiscate the car, issue a ticket and require the person to arrange a ride home.

    If another licensed driver is in the car, that person can drive the car home, he said.

    Bridges, 41, was alone and walked about two miles home, she said.

    Her black Hyundai Tucson was towed to S & R Towing Inc. Her husband, Michael, came home from work to help try to rectify the situation.

    That afternoon, Bridges said, they tried to take care of every detail and make up for what she admitted was a careless mistake.

    Their first stop: Department of Motor Vehicles. They paid $28 to renew her driver's license.

    Next stop: Oceanside Police Department. They paid $165 for a "vehicle release fee."

    Poorman said the fee pays for processing and personnel costs associated with unlicensed drivers.

    Next stop: S & R Towing Inc. They paid $185 for the tow from the checkpoint and $40 for a daily storage fee.

    Drivers with an expired license may get their cars back as early as the same day, Poorman said.

    However, people caught driving with a suspended or revoked license usually have their car impounded for 30 days before it can be reclaimed, he said. Think Illegal aliens

    The trip took the couple five hours during an afternoon when Michael Bridges was supposed to be at work.

    At that point, after shelling out $418, Bridges said, she was just glad to be done with it ---- or so she thought.

    "I felt terrible about it," she said. "We had big financial troubles this year and were just getting back to where we could start saving again."

    In May, a letter arrived from the San Diego Superior Court.

    Bridges, thinking she already had paid the fees related to the checkpoint, read only a third of the way down the page, stopping after this sentence: "If you have already taken care of this matter, please disregard this notice."

    So she put it in a pile, not realizing that a few lines after she stopped reading was this sentence: "You must pay $358 on or before June 18, 2008."

    The letter was announcing another charge, this one for the driving without a license.

    On July 11, another letter arrived, this one from AllianceOne Receivables Management, Inc.

    It announced that in addition to her unpaid $358 ticket, a $300 fine had been added because she failed to appear in court or pay bail by June 18 as spelled out in the previous letter ---- which was still in a pile collecting dust, she said.

    Pay the $658 or appear in court within 10 days, the letter said, or "you may be subject to wage garnishment, bank levy, or both."

    The $418 had now ballooned to $1,076. Bridges was incredulous.

    "I would have showed up in court if I knew I had to," she said. "I guess I'm not an expert in life."

    She went to court on a Monday morning in mid-July and presented her case to a judge. The judge waived the $300 fine and cut the $358 ticket to $173.

    Final bill: $591.

    Bridges said she was thankful her family could handle the cost without resorting to using credit cards. She actually made off on the cheaper end, because she retrieved the car from storage right away; it costs $40 every additional day it's there.

    But she questioned the cost and hassle involved and lamented how destructive the situation would have been for other families.

    "There are people who no way could have paid this," she said.

    The ordeal caused at least one change for the family: Michael Bridges has assumed responsibility for all paperwork.

    And Tammy Bridges said she won't forget to renew her driver's license.

    Another parent at her kids' school mentioned that her license had been expired since January.

    "Listen to my story," Bridges told her.

    Contact staff writer Dan Simmons at (760) 740-5426 or [email protected].

  • #2
    Well it all boils down to the fact the It is her fault for not renewing her license on time, not only did the dmv send a reminder but the expiration is printed on everyones license And again with the letter sent from the courts, she did not fully read the letter, just assuming it did not apply to her. If that check point had not been up there is no doubt in my mind that she would STILL be driving on an expired license. No sympathy.
    Originally Posted by VegasMetro
    maybe it’s me but I think a six pack and midget porn makes for good times?????

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    • #3
      Originally posted by mtxpro752 View Post
      Well it all boils down to the fact the It is her fault for not renewing her license on time, not only did the dmv send a reminder but the expiration is printed on everyones license And again with the letter sent from the courts, she did not fully read the letter, just assuming it did not apply to her. If that check point had not been up there is no doubt in my mind that she would STILL be driving on an expired license. No sympathy.
      Yeah, it's her fault- but that seems awfully expensive.

      Then again, fines up here are cheap..
      summer - winter - work

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      • #4
        The ordeal caused at least one change for the family: Michael Bridges has assumed responsibility for all paperwork.
        Hopefully he'll read stuff before tossing it in a pile?

        And seriously, it's not like you have to renew in person.
        Molly Weasley makes Chuck Norris eat his vegetables.

        sigpic

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        • #5
          Tell the loser to pay her bills and this wouldn't have happened. It's always someone else's fault when a license is expired. The expiration date is printed right on the license.
          Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

          I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

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          • #6
            What a moron. It was only $28 to renew her license and she was too stupid to do it.

            Hell, her fine would have been $300 less if she had read the notice they sent her. I hope no one expects sympathy for stupidity.
            What is Perseverance?
            -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
            -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
            -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


            BOP - BPA - ICE

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            • #7
              I just wanted to add that this is a stupid news article. This stuff has been happening for a long time, but I'm guessing the "victim" this time was some rich suburbanite, so the news outlets thought it was suddenly worthy of an article.
              What is Perseverance?
              -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
              -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
              -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


              BOP - BPA - ICE

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by ateamer View Post
                Tell the loser to pay her bills and this wouldn't have happened. It's always someone else's fault when a license is expired. The expiration date is printed right on the license.
                Not only that, but at least where I am (and in the state where I first got my license before moving here), renewal date is conveniently the same as my b'day, making it easy to remember (then again, except for my most current one, they've always been issued in late Feb. w/ my early Mar. b'day because it's usually more convenient a few days early. Current one is oddball because my purse was snatched a couple years ago, so the replacement was issued the day after that, but the expiration didn't change). Are there any states that set the renewal to some random date?
                Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear. --Mark Twain

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                • #9
                  I probably would have told her to renew her license and let her go on her way. Big deal, she forgot to renew her license.
                  The liberal politician has the only job where they go to the office to work for everyone but those who pay their salary.

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                  • #10
                    Yeah UI have to renew on my birthday as well, but it isn't every year like it is for the plates, but every 5 years so I can see some people missing it.

                    I do believe the cost is way to high, even for stupidity.

                    Its just like if you get arrested for lets say, drunk driving,
                    and the car gets towed. Lets say it turns out you were not legally drunk, you still get stuck with the tow and storage on the car. Why should you pay if you are innocent?
                    Though their numbers are many, as the grass upon the field, we will count them at the end of the day.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by kingsman View Post
                      Yeah UI have to renew on my birthday as well, but it isn't every year like it is for the plates, but every 5 years so I can see some people missing it.

                      I do believe the cost is way to high, even for stupidity.

                      Its just like if you get arrested for lets say, drunk driving,
                      and the car gets towed. Lets say it turns out you were not legally drunk, you still get stuck with the tow and storage on the car. Why should you pay if you are innocent?
                      We test on the scene, so if your not legally drunk, we unarrest you and your car. But we don't tow cars for BS like an expired drivers license.
                      The liberal politician has the only job where they go to the office to work for everyone but those who pay their salary.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by tony.o View Post
                        We test on the scene, so if your not legally drunk, we unarrest you and your car. But we don't tow cars for BS like an expired drivers license.
                        What exactly is this 'unarrest' and 'legally drunk' you speak of..?
                        summer - winter - work

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                        • #13
                          Where I live the po po can not give you a breathalyzer test unless youre under arrest.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by JLee View Post
                            What exactly is this 'unarrest' and 'legally drunk' you speak of..?
                            give me a little more to go on.
                            blow under the limit, take from back of squad car, take handcuffs off.
                            Last edited by tony.o; 08-12-2008, 01:19 AM.
                            The liberal politician has the only job where they go to the office to work for everyone but those who pay their salary.

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                            • #15
                              Fact of the matter is, it is ultimately her fault. She should have taken matters in her own hands and have it renewed instead of putting it off. Even though your uberly busy, it is your responsibility to insure that everything involved with a motor vehicle is up to date and current. If she would have dont this, she would have been spared for the hellish 500 dollars of fines

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