Friday, January 17, 2014

Bigger Teeth, Still Wrong Butt

I had already planned on holding on the phone as long as it took to actually speak with the Fridley prosecuting attorney, Sarah Kimball, yesterday morning. I had left two voicemail messages, one Monday, one Wednesday, getting no reply. Busy lady, she's in her office for a half hour window in the morning before spending the rest of the day in court. Wednesday afternoon I finally pinned down just what that window was.

But I woke up yesterday to read this on a post-it note on the bathroom mirror:

The MN fine-pay website now says driver's license suspended for failure to appear in court and it still has your name on the citation! 

Dang! How to ruin a perfectly good morning.  So, same plan, only now I was going to be calling from home rather than fitting a call into my work schedule. The office opens at 8:30. I started calling at 8:25. I wanted to be first in the que.

It had been an interesting three days. When I first couldn't get through on Monday, I tried a side route, calling the county district court offices admin dept. The woman I spoke with couldn't have been more helpful and pleasant, though ultimately all she was able to do was impart information. She checked the ticket, then my driving record, then the car ownership because the cop mentioned the "owner" of the car as the one receiving the ticket. It was Paul's car. At least he got that right. And my driving record hadn't had a ticket since one for speeding in 1990.  I finally figured out that the cost to me in fines and insurance rates was well over $500, and there was no urgent run that was worth that.

"What a good girl you've been."

OK, nice to hear and have clarified, though not helpful to my needs. She also said that I needed to speak to Sarah Kimball. At least now I knew an easy computer search would back up my story. But that was Monday, and now the wheels were grinding.

When I finally got through to Sarah, she recognized my name and said she had sent a message to the officer to verify my claim and inquire whether the ticket should have been issued to Paul.( Or perhaps a new one issued?) She was no happier than I that it had taken so long for the problem to come to my attention, and I assured her that I'd had that conversation with my son.

Checking her records, she didn't see that my license was suspended, and asked how I got that information. I mentioned the website. Apparently it was in the process of getting suspended, and somebody had yet to hit a couple of critical keys on their computer to make it really official. She offered to email me a form stating that my license was valid - for the day only! - so I could print it out and carry it with me, just in case it was needed. Meanwhile she'd contact the proper people and halt the process. She'd send updated info later in the day.

I could work! It was only two hours later than usual, so not a complete loss for the day.

When I finally got home last night, there were two more emails from Sarah in my in-box. One was a copy of her inquiry to the trooper, without reply, which I forwarded to Paul. It's now on him to take action, and we had that discussion again last night. The other was to the admin. department stopping the implementation of the suspension.

I'm clear!

I'm keeping the emails though, just in case. You never know. Life has this way of saying that it just hasn't been interesting enough lately, and prods itself into doing something about it.

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