Hijinks Not Yet a Felony, But Raise Revenue for City

So today’s “Child drives off in car” story is brought to you from East St. Louis, Illinois:

A 5-year-old East St. Louis boy slid into the driver’s seat of his uncle’s Cadillac Sunday afternoon, put on his seatbelt, turned the key and drove off.

But he didn’t go far. Four blocks later — with his mother in pursuit in her car — the boy crashed the car into a fence.

He was not injured but police gave the boy tickets for driving without a license and without insurance.

Hey, no harm done, and the police raise some revenue for the local coffers, which we metro resident know are pretty thin on the East Side, although these days we’re no longer hearing reports of thieves stealing radios from police cars and the police being unable to replace them. Good on ya, ESL. It’s due to creative financing like ticketing a boy for driving without a license and without insurance. Unfortunately, he buckled up and did not reach an interstate, where driving too long in the left lane is a revenue-stream offense in Illinois.

But wait! The ESL tins are more creative than you would think!

Lenzie Stewart, chief of detectives, said the uncle had turned off the car when he came over to visit the boy’s mom, Kia Haynes, in the 700 block of Post Place. But he left the keys in the ignition.

“Mother came out, saw him driving down the street, jumped in her car and pursued him and had him pull over to the side. When he did, he hit the fence,” Stewart said.

Haynes called police after the crash and took responsibility for what happened. As a result, she was ticketed for contributing to the delinquency of a minor, Stewart said.

She called the police herself and said this harmless madcap adventure was her fault, and the helpful ESL tins helped their city meet their payroll by giving her an extra ticket for it.

I am too laid back to be in law enforcement or the legislature.

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