Thursday, February 19, 2009

Funny thing about warrants...they last

Diana Arrington just learned that lesson the hard way.

It appears that Diana was stopped for a traffic offense and arrested for DUI in Anchorage, Alaska back in September of 1995. because authorities didn't know that she had two prior DUI convictions in Georgia--making this one a felony--she was allowed to bond out on a promise to appear. However she immediately jumped bail and fled to Florida, where she then tried to have a lawyer get the case dismissed in her absence. When that failed, she simply gave the court the bird and refused to appear.

However, for some reason, she decided to return to Alaska twelve years later, and when she was stopped for another traffic violation, that vintage warrant was waiting for her, along with a new felony Failure To Appear charge.

And evidence usually sticks around, too, so it was nothing for the prosecutor--who was still in college back when Arrington was first arrested--to convince a jury to convict her.

Her sentencing is in May. Hopefully they don't let her leave again. Come, on, jail time!

Now this reminds me of a guy that I dealt with several years ago. I was working a traffic closure post for a big local event. This entailed my sitting at a barricade at an intersection where traffic had been blocked, just to keep people from going around it.

And yes, I was making overtime money for this.

So I'm sitting there, minding my own business, when I see a couple walk away from the event. Right in front of me, the male turns, steps into a patch of trees, and proceeds to take a leak. Now since I'm sitting right there in a marked police car, I have to wonder what this guy's thinking, especially since there were plenty of porta-potties back where he'd just come from. So I get out of my car and walk over as he's finishing up, and he's got a case of attitude from the get-go. I explain that what he's done is illegal, and he tells me that it's ridiculous because the porta-potties are nasty and have long lines and that since nobody saw him, it's not a big deal.

Well anyone else could have come along and seen him in this very public location, so yeah, it is a big deal. This again was one that could have just been handled with a warning but the guy was obviously trying to show his woman there that he was the Alpha Dog so instead of saying "gee, you're right...I'm really sorry and won't do it again," he argued with me about it. So I wrote him the ticket for Urinating in Public and told him to show up on the mandatory court date or else a warrant for his arrest would be issued. I figure if he's going to be an ass about it, he can take a day off work and come down to stand before the judge in open court and explain why he was peeing in public in broad daylight. No big deal.

Time went by, and I'd forgotten all about it until I got a subpoena for this case almost a year later. Here I'd figured that he'd shown up in court, paid whatever fine, and had the case dealt with short of a trial, but apparently he'd decided not to appear at all and a warrant had been issued. That warrant sat there, quietly waiting until...

Fast-forward ten months. As it was relayed to me, this guy was at the airport picking up his fiancee's parents--parents that he was meeting for the first time--when he was involved in a minor collision with an airport shuttle bus. (I can sympathize with him here...those shuttle bus drivers all suck.) Responding Airport Police show up to take the report, run the dirvers' liceses as a matter of course, and...

"Sir, you're under arrest."

"For what?"

"Well apparently there's a warrant for your arrest for urinating in public..."

Right in front of the prospective in-laws. So much for first impressions.

He wound up being taken to jail and booked on the UIP charge and he had to post a bond, which I understand he had to borrow from his soon-to-be dad-in-law.

Fine for Urinating in Public: $125.00
Getting arrested for peeing in public right in front of your fiancee's parents on that special night: Priceless.

It never pays to ignore things like court appearances. Arrest warrants don't get old and you never know when they're going to just out at you and yell "Surprise!"


Anonymous said...

As for the UIP story, I don't believe in karma, but...

That is awesome.

Anonymous said...

Totally love it!!!! Yes!!

He's an idiot!