When a New Jersey state trooper pulled a woman over for speeding, he actually felt bad about it. The woman, Carley Williams, was "emotional" and explained that she was on her way to the hospital, where her father had stage four cancer and was hardly breathing. She was trying to make it to the hospital to say goodbye. The trooper, Christopher J. Cummings, is a good man. He has a heart. So he told her to slow down and then let Carley go on her way. But then it nagged at him. Cummings says he always asks speeders if there is an emergency, and no doubt he's heard it all. But this time he decided to do some checking up. When he found out that Carley's father had actually passed away five years ago, he was incensed at her lie. He felt she had "preyed on [his] emotions." So he decided to do something about it.
After Cummings left the scene, allowing Carley to go on her way to the hospital, he decided to call the hospital where she said she was headed. He asked about Carley's dad and was told there was no such person there.
So then he did an online search. And found an obituary for Carley's dad from five years ago. That is, in fact, why Carley had so much detail about her dad's condition. Because her dad had died of cancer. And it was why Carley was able to seem so emotional. She just had to dredge up what had happened five years ago.
Obviously, none of what happened half a decade before was an excuse for speeding that day. Cummings told ABC News: "For someone to lie about their deceased father just to get out of a speeding ticket was pretty upsetting to me as a person."
Cummings then ran Carley through a database and found out she had a suspended registration. So he decided to head over to her house ... and arrest her.
At first, he said Carley denied lying. But eventually she fessed up.
Did Cummings take this too personally? Carley was going 82 miles an hour in a 65-mile an hour zone. This IS speeding. But it's not like she was going 100 miles an hour and weaving in and out of traffic or drunk. Did Cummings really need to put all of that time into essentially punishing a woman for a lie?
I say yes. First off, she had two infractions: the speeding and driving with a suspended registration. Second of all, she's probably been using her father's death to get out of myriad things since it happened. Hence why her story was so well rehearsed.
Everyone lies occasionally, and most people are going to do what they can to get out of a ticket. But there's something about using your dead father to do it that reeks of entitlement. There are consequences to breaking the law.
But there are also consequences for lying. She's paying hers. And hopefully that will be a teachable moment for her.
Do you think the officer overreacted?
Image via CAN News/YouTube