Note to Ticket Fixers: Check the Number Twice, Dial Once


"Dismiss this case," read the handwritten note from Joann Reed, a records clerk at the St. Clair County, Illinois, Sheriff's Department. "The guy is the son of one of our deputies." The note accompanied a copy of a speeding ticket issued by police in Centreville. Unfortunately for Reed, she accidentally faxed it to the Belleville News-Democrat instead of the intended recipient, Centreville Village Attorney Carmen Durso, who in any event does not have the power to dismiss cases involving violations of state law. "I get calls like these all the time," Durso told the News-Democrat. "I don't think it's unusual or strange." Sheriff Mearl Justus does, or at least he's pretending that he does. "I'll look at the whole thing," Justus assured the paper. "I'll take some action."   

I hope that Justus, in addition to investigating Reed's inept attempt at ticket fixing, can clear up the mystery of how you mistakenly fax such a note to the local newspaper instead of the village attorney's office. Did Reed have them both on speed dial, right next to each other? Do the fax numbers differ by just one transposed digit? Or did Reed's guilt drive her to self-sabotage?

[Thanks to Mark Sletten for the tip.]

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  1. Sheriff Mearl Justus pledged to investigate. He said he’ll “find out what it’s about,” then weigh disciplinary action.

    Haha, yeah, discipline her for exposing the nepotism which we all know is rampant.

    1. As we’ve seen recently with the xtranormal videos, that seems to be the only thing many departments actually punish.

  2. “Justus” is a hell of a surname for a sheriff.

    1. Maybe he’s related to Buford T.

  3. Sheriff Mearl Justus

    This poor guy never had a chance to be anything but a sheriff.

    1. All he needs is a deputy named Enos.

    2. That’s so awesome. A defendant demands justice, and this guys shows up.

      1. He has to sign off on CCW permits. Otherwise: no Justus, no piece.

      1. Well, he got 2 out of 3 letters right.

        Also, his parents named him Mearl. Or did he change his name from Earl Justice after a run-in with the law?

    3. Tell me about it!

  4. Talk about digging yourself a deeper hole:

    “Guilty. Period,” Reed later told a News-Democrat reporter after being questioned about the fax.

    But she insisted she falsely suggested the ticketed motorist was the son of a deputy but actually a college student she was trying to help out. She said she figured the misrepresentation would help get the ticket with a $175 fine tossed.

    The News-Democrat reported otherwise, saying reporters discovered the Aug. 18 ticket for going 23 miles per hour over the speed limit was issued to a deputy’s son.

    1. No deputy’s son is some pansy college boy!

    2. My dad’s retired now, but I was once a deputy’s son. 23 MPH over? Not only would I have gotten the ticket, I’d have been skinned alive even after I was an adult.

      You have to be pretty stupid to get caught doing that anyway, especially if you are a deputy’s son.

      1. Dunphy? Is that you?

        1. Nope.

  5. What drove Ron Paul to wear fake eyebrows? Does he suffer from some codition that makes his eyebrow hair fall out? Are fake eyebrows glued on? What on earth made his start falling off in the middle of the GOP debate? Could he have been sabotaged by Rick Perry: “Here lttile buddy. I always use this Texas Hold ‘Em Dow Good glue on my bushies. Give it a try.”

    1. Arf! Arf! Arf!

    2. Max|10.12.11 @ 6:00PM|#
      “What drove Ron Paul to wear fake eyebrows?…”

      Poor, poor Max. Now all his sexual fantasies are ruined. RUINED!

  6. Unfortunately for Reed, she accidentally faxed it to the Belleville News-Democrat instead of the intended recipient

    ROFL. That’s as good as a World’s Dumbest Criminals clip of an armed robber storming into a donut shop full of cops. (Sorry, that’s redundant; I only need to say “donut shop” and the rest is implied.)

    Too bad the article doesn’t say whether she did this independently or whether her boss and/or the deputy demanded that she try to get this ticket fixed for the deputy’s kid. If she “oopsie-daisy” sent the fax to the newspaper after her boss ordered her to get the ticket fixed, she’s my kind of scum, fearless and inventive.

    If not, she’s just another corrupt, lying government employee who should find out what it’s like being unemployed.

    1. Actually I saw what would have been the best scene ever when I was heading out for lunch at work a couple of months ago. It was a police APC of some sort (actually it sort of looked like a BTR-70) that was parked outside a Dunkin’ Donuts. I wanted to take a picture and sent it to Radley Balko with the caption “this is what is wrong with America” but they had already left when I was headed back.

    2. “What went ye out into the wilderness for to see? A reed shaken with the wind?” ~ Luke 7:24

  7. I grew up in St. Clair County and I’m not surprised. Nothing will happen to anyone, unless someone involved is a minority. Then all bets are off.

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