Woman Serves Two Days in Jail For Speeding

Published 04/18 2014 06:04PM

Updated 04/29 2014 11:49AM

(ANDREW COUNTY, Mo.) We're all guilty of speeding at one point or another. But one woman spent two nights behind bars for driving too fast. Though the penalty may be harsh - some say it's a necessary punishment to keep drivers safe.

"There's no exception to the rule of speeding. Forty-eight hours and you will be treated like a criminal," stated Pamela Wenzel.

Wenzel spent 48 hours in jail for speeding in Andrew County. She says she's not debating the ticket, she's upset she was given two separate citations from the same officer then treated like a criminal behind bars.

"He just was so degrading in his tone of voice and he had the audacity to tell me that that's the way it was and that I was the one that got arrested," added Wenzel.

The first ticket clocked her going 90 mph in a 70 and the other 101 mph in a 70 speed limit. Wenzel says she was test driving a new car when she was ticketed and was not familiar with how fast the car was.

We spoke with state troopers about the citations, and they say though it's not usual to hand out two tickets at the same time, it could happen.

"Typically, that's not a normal course of action by a Missouri State Trooper. Someone's speed's checked and they're issued a summons for that speed," added Sergeant Jacob Angle, Public Information Officer with the Missouri Highway Patrol.

Angle says the trooper's decision was justified in this scenario because the speeds were excessive. Since speed factors to a large number of accidents, he says their main priority is to keep motorists safe.

"Speed is one of our primary duties. We regulate people's speed out there. Unfortunately, most of the time that comes with being issued a summons," stated Angle.

Though serving jail time for a ticket may sound harsh,  Judge Michael Ordnung, who didn't want to appear on camera says sentencing is a judge's personal choice.

In Andrew County, Ordnung's policy is if a motorists does 90 mph or above, it's an automatic two days behind bars. If a person does 100 mph or more, they could get five to seven days in the slammer.

But still Wenzel says the punishment was extreme. She says her time in jail was the worst experience she's ever gone through. During her time behind bars, she says she was denied medical treatment for her illness.

"I just don't think having a speeding ticket constitutes being in jail for 48 hours subject to other inmates that have prior crimes," added Wenzel.

Even though Wenzel has already served her time, she is still trying to fight the ticket at the state level.

Judge Ordnung says he makes no exceptions to his rules, he's even thrown an 87-year-old woman in jail for speeding.

In Missouri, the maximum sentence for speeding is one year in jail.

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