There isn’t a mortal among us who hasn’t been late for something important at some time. (If you have never been late for anything ever, you are not a mortal, you are a human-alarm clock hybrid.)
So within that context, there are few among us who wouldn’t feel an initial twinge of empathy for Loretta Lacy, a South Dakota woman who found herself blazing across the Interstate to make it to her granddaughter’s school dance on time – only to end up with four speeding tickets in a three-hour window.
Not that speeding should ever be condoned, but pushing that speedometer a little higher than the legal limit is an impulse familiar to many a licence-holding biped.
Except when you start reading through the rest of the details and realize the 49-year-old probably shouldn’t have been drawing any state trooper attention to herself.
According to police reports, Lacy was spotted weaving in and out of traffic, clocking up to 112 miles per hour in a 90 miles per hour zone. The Star Tribune in Minnesota notes that Lacy was headed two states over to Wisconsin, where her granddaughter had requested her presence at the girl’s middle-school dance.
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State patrol first pulled Lacy over at 2:30 p.m. on Friday about 10 miles east of Jackson, Miss. In addition to a lead foot, Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske allegedly found the woman in possession of a “very, very small amount” of marijuana. What she was not in possession of: car insurance.
But the dedicated grandmother would not be deterred and continued to hurtle toward her destination. Twenty minutes later, she was pulled over for speeding again, although this time she’d slowed down to a more reasonable 99 miles per hour. She received a second ticket for speeding and lack of insurance.
By now, police in both states had been put on alert for Lacy’s 1999 Chrysler LHS, though it’s doubtful they imagined she would have to be pulled over again. Right?
Wrong. Less than an hour later, Lacy added to her already impressive ticket collection with a third round. She made it four-for-four just before 5 p.m., clocking 88 miles per hour in a 70 miles per hour zone.
Roeske told the paper that he’s never seen a motorist accrue four speeding tickets in one day. But seeing as Lacy’s additional misdemeanours did not "rise to the level where the vehicle was required to be towed or her to be jailed. ... We have to go by the booking guidelines. There is criteria that has to be met," he said.
Lacy faces $500 in fines instead. And she ended up missing her granddaughter’s dance, which had to sting more than any monetary consequence.
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