Teen jailed over traffic ticket he had already paid
ATLANTA — An error by police caused a teenager to be briefly jailed over a traffic ticket he had already paid the fine for.
Stephen Kelsey, 17, a rising high school senior, had been playing soccer in Madrid and London and was arrested Monday when he returned to the HartsfieldJackson Atlanta Interna- tional Airport after customs officials checked his passport.
The check revealed an outstanding arrest warrant for failure to appear in court on a ticket given for rolling through a stop sign.
Kelsey was turned over to Atlanta police, who brought him to the Fulton County Jail.
But the teen had already paid the $ 175 fine.
“ Somebody made a mistake,” Kelsey said, “ and here I am having to be handcuffed in front of my coaches, my mom, my brother and my teammates.”
Marlene Kelsey, who was at the airport to pick up her son, frantically began working to get him released.
She got proof the initial court date had been resched- uled and the ticket paid, and went to the Fulton County Jail, then to Sandy Springs, whose police department issued the arrest warrant.
“ The arresting officer was adamant that I call Sandy Springs,” Marlene Kelsey said. “ I went to the precinct and nobody was there. When I called the ‘ after hours’ number, the phone rang, then cut off.”