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Library: Woman Jailed for Ignoring the Courts

When a hot library headline pops up, my non-library friends say did you here about ____?! This time it was over this story: woman cuffed, booked for not paying library fine. If you read the article you realize she was jailed for ignoring the library’s calls, letters and notice to appear in court.

Still, she was surprised when officers with a warrant knocked on her door, cuffed her and took her to the police station to be fingerprinted and photographed.

Police Capt. Joe Gabrish says officers follow the same procedure with every warrant.

Fines are not a library money-maker; they are a deterrent aimed to keep materials in circulation so that all card holders can access to them. Also, the value of an item is not just the list price, it is the time spent by staff selecting and preparing the item for circulation.

At public libraries, we make it very easy for customers to get a library card, but it is the responsibility of the card holder to understand the library policies, including the loan period, fine structure and whether or not the library employees a collection agency to reclaim long overdue materials and fines. Mark your calendar your materials are due and ask if your library offers courtesy email reminders to help keep those items circulating so you do not receive overdue notices!

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