Warning to Richland Hills, Texas residents: pay your traffic tickets on time. Your city marshal really doesn’t mess around with this stuff.
Don’t believe me? Just ask Sarah Boaz. Boaz was put in jail on Wednesday after she was a month late to pay a traffic ticket for running a stop sign. She was getting ready to leave for work when an officer showed up to her house with a warrant for her arrest.
Like most, Boaz thought the arrest warrant was overkill.
“I’m like, nobody puts out a bench warrant after 60 days. Why would you do that? You wouldn’t do that,” she said.
When Boaz arrived at the jail, she was taken to a separate room by a female officer and checked in. Boaz recalled the check-in process to North Texas news station CBS-DFW.
She remembered the officer saying, “I’m going to need you to undress. I’m going to need you to stand against the wall. Please don’t step in front of this white box, or I’ll take that..."
“Obviously I am going to jail,” she said.
There was some initial concern over why Boaz was told to undress before being checked into the jail, but Richland Hills officials have since said that she procedure is mandatory for all new inmates.
Attorney Jason Smith said that although county rules do allow citizens to be thrown in jail for unpaid tickets, there is nothing preventing these officials from taking some less drastic measures first.
"The constitution doesn’t keep the government or government officials from using common sense. Unfortunately, some police officers, some governments get overly aggressive because they want that ticket revenue,” Smith said.
Richland Hills officials say two overdue notices were sent to Boaz, but Boaz says she never received them.