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At 7:30 a.m. on April 11, 2012, my teen-age kids were on their way to high school. They were pulled over at a traffic stop on Circle Avenue intended to identify vehicles without Forest Park vehicle registration stickers. My son has a new car, yet to have a sticker affixed to it. Instead of being told to make sure he affixed his sticker, given a warning, or similar; he and my daughter were told to pull over and were detained for more than 15 minutes while his license and registration were checked. During this period of time, my kids were asked if they were carrying anything illegal, where they were going (with school backpacks and sporting equipment in full view), why my daughter was sitting in the back rather than from seat, and so on. My son’s license showed no priors; his insurance and registration were in order, so they were sent away with a warning. Consequently, they were late for school, received tardies, and my daughter received an incomplete for gym because she didn’t have enough time to get into a bathing suit.

The police department refused to provide me with some verification for the stop, so I could not get the incomplete waived for my daughter. I was told that the officer had full rights to detain them, check my son’s license, and ask questions about possible illegal behavior. Why? I have never been asked these questions and DETAINED for not having a $25.00 sticker. Middle-aged women driving Volvos are exempt? I am ashamed to live in a community where law-abiding and peace-loving teenagers are detained unnecessarily, made late for their responsibilities, and treated like criminals. For what? A $25.00 vehicle registration sticker. Is the village revenue worth harassment? I don’t think it is! We will be moving out of the village.

Sue Bailey
Forest Park