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Well, was she?

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

McHenry County, Illinois

Well, was she?

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
October 17, 2007

This afternoon as I rounded the Square and turned onto Dean Street by the Opera House, there was a shiny, blue Honda FIT with Illinois license X64 0320 parked in the first parking space on Dean. No problem with that, except the car was facing the wrong way on Dean Street.

The driver had to have driven across the center line against the flow of traffic and dangerously near the corner, in order to park with the driver’s door against the curb. This put the front of the car very near the crosswalk.

How would the driver leave? Did the driver think he was in England? Would the driver turn left and go around the Square the wrong way? Would the driver get involved in an accident when pulling away from the curb, if a car turning off the Square rounded the corner? Would the driver make a sweeping right turn to go around the Square in the correct direction? Would the driver stop for the stop sign by Angelo’s?

Having all these questions in mind, I telephoned Woodstock P.D. and asked for an officer to come and ticket the car. At the least, the car was parked in violation of state law by parking with the driver’s door next to the curb on a two-way street.

Within about five minutes Woodstock’s unmarked car rolled up, and the officer stopped and appeared to begin writing a ticket. Shortly after that, a young woman walked to the car and entered. I called to the officer that the driver was entering the car.

She started up, drove out of the parking spot and proceeded to turn right across the oncoming turn lane to head east on Van Buren, in the correct direction of travel around the Square. The officer did not attempt to stop her, and I inquired whether he intended to ticket her, as I had requested of the dispatcher. He replied that she worked in the Opera House.

“Gee, is that supposed to make a difference?” I wondered to myself.

I said that I hoped he would ticket her, while two or three cars pulled around the stopped police car. He pulled away, and I’ve been wondering all evening whether he caught up with her and wrote her a couple of tickets – one for parking unlawfully and the other for driving on the wrong side of the road.

It’s interesting that a young woman employee of the Opera House, who committed two moving violations and a parking violation, didn’t even get stopped before she could drive out of the officer’s sight.

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