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Latino Daily News

Friday June 22, 2012

10-year-old Traffic Summons Lands New Jersey Woman in New York Jail

A New Jersey woman learned the hard way that ignoring or forgetting a traffic summons, even if it’s in another state, is never a good idea.

Ten years ago, Krystle Garcia, 27, was given a court summons for not having her insurance card with her while she drove in New York. Then 17, Garcia says she forgot about the summons and was never reminded of it. The New Jersey woman says that for 10 years she has had no problems renewing her license or obtaining vehicle registration sticks. For the last six years, Garcia has driven into New York from New Jersey for work, getting the occasional ticket, and she always paid them without the summons ever being brought up..

So when she was stopped at a checkpoint and jailed last week she was shocked. Garcia spent 14 hours in a jail cell because the summons she had forgotten about resulted in a warrant.

‘It was horrifying,’ Garcia told NBC New York, ‘I sat in a holding cell for 14 hours with people who had gun charges, who were fighting each other.’

Last week, Garcia settled the matter and agreed to pay a $155 fine.

She is not letting what she descried as “torture” go, however, and plans to file a complaint with the police department, saying the 14-hour ordeal left her feeling “completely violated.” Garcia said she wanted to share her story to ensure changes are made so something like this won’t happen to her or anyone else again.