Parking Ticket Error Lands Pennsylvania Woman in The Twilight Zone
The setting for this story is from another dimension
Picture, if you will, a woman visiting her mailbox on a cold mid-afternoon in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. As she opens it up, she reaches in to receive her mail and gleefully starts sorting through it like a card dealer at a casino. However, what she finds is far from the mundane of energy bills, credit card offers, and restaurant coupons. One letter will summon Marcia Todman to the courtroom of “The Twilight Zone.”
Two parking tickets
So begins the tale of a hellish nightmare for a Pennsylvania woman, and it all stems from a parking ticket error.
Marcia Todman received two parking citations in the mail last week. Both tickets — issued days apart — recalled a mid-October incident in California Borough. A driver of a black Toyota blocked a driveway close to the California University of Pennsylvania property.
Here is the twist: Todman never visited California Borough, and she does not drive a Toyota. She drives a Ford.
Two separate states
After looking through the records, Todman noticed another thing fishy about the tickets. The cited license plate was from West Virginia — not from Pennsylvania like hers. This prompted her to spring into action.
When she called the magistrate’s office, she explained the mistake, but failed to get her parking ticket situation resolved. She received an arrest warrant in the mail a few days later.
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The good news about this episode is that Todman escapes this terror when the California city mayor gets involved. After the police chief chatted with him, police found a booboo in their ticketing system. They had cited the wrong driver and permitted Todman to rip up her tickets and move on.
While this woman is no longer a suspect in this case, one thing is certain. She will never visit California Borough, which just happens to be the capital of “The Twilight Zone.”
John Baden is known for his creativity, humor, and charm. Since writing books during his childhood, he has written for newspapers, radio and TV stations, and online publications. In his free time, he enjoys playing the piano, watching Chicago Cubs baseball, and experiencing the outdoors. For John, a perfect day is summed up in a morning cup of coffee, an afternoon run in the sun, and an evening spent in an exciting chapter of a good book. See more articles by John.