Friday, January 9
A and J just headed back home after a very pleasant 2-day visit. We found Fairfield and the courthouse without any problems, got there early and only had to wait around for a couple of hours before the judge heard their case. The courtroom was jammed, since it was their first session of the new year and they had a couple weeks' worth of cases backed up. I think that worked out to the benefit of the people there that day. We got to hear lots of other peoples' business and watch the judge throw out ticket after ticket after ticket. I don't know if he's typical of Jersey judges, but the guy was a real softie. People with ten different violations would get all of them thrown out except maybe one moving violation and he'd knock that down to a zero-points offense. If I ever get the yen to do some crimes, I'm going to Fairfield.
A and J brought me along as the bag man, so I was carrying a huge amount of cash in case they needed to pay their way out of big fines and twelve years of interest. Turns out a) the judge saw on their papers that he had dismissed the cases without prejudice four years ago anyway, so they kinda sorta didn't need to be there in the first place, and b) the age of the case (and their basic innocence of most of the things with which they'd been charged) made it impossible for the state to do anything even if they'd wanted to. They were eligible for a contempt charge, for not having shown up to an appearance twelve years ago, but the judge neglected to even hit them with that. He dismissed all their charges with prejudice and sent them on their way. They got off, as they say, scot free.10:41 AM