Letter to the Editor

Not sure if the ticket was warranted

Sunday, May 1, 2011

To the Editor:

On March 18, 2011, I was issued a ticket in Brazil.

I pulled out of a café in Brazil onto a four-lane road and proceeded through the town, admiring the houses along the road, moving at about 40 mph.

Imagine my surprise at seeing lights flashing in my rearview mirror.

An officer told me I had pulled out in front of him and did not accelerate fast enough. The officer admitted he had been speeding and then told me that because he had to "tap his brakes," I was ticketed for failure to yield. In my opinion, this is just about the silliest ticket I can imagine.

As you might expect, I am paying this traffic fine, but under duress. I expect it is part of the strategy of the local law enforcement officials to target vehicles with out-of-state plates for silly infractions in order to earn revenue. I am not about to drive four-and-a-half hours to go to court to contest this ticket, since it is cheaper to just pay it. I am sure the officer was well aware of this when he issued this frivolous ticket.

I write this letter to let you know that I will not spend one more dime in Brazil or Clay County for that matter.

Let me preface this by saying that I have a child attending college in Terre Haute. I will be in the area many times over the next four years. I make a point of touring local attractions, visiting small towns and spending my money at small mom-and-pop stores rather than national chain restaurants and stores.

I had indeed spent the morning at the Exotic Cat Rescue Center and had eaten lunch at the Harmony Café.

I will not return to Brazil or Clay County, except maybe to pass through, making sure to drive exactly the speed limit.

I know several people who feel the same way about driving through Brazil and I let my opinion about this be shared with everyone I know.

This policy cannot be good for business in your town and county. I would urge a discussion with local law enforcement officials.

Very sincerely,

Nancy Christensen,

Batavia, Ill.