Skip to comments.Iron Bowl ticket ruse nabs parents for unpaid child support
Posted on 07/30/2011 1:21:11 PM PDT by camerongood210
Their dreams of the Iron Bowl turned into a reality behind iron bars.
What were supposed to be coveted tickets to the 2011 Alabama-Auburn football matchup turned out to be a trip to jail for at least a dozen deadbeat parents arrested Friday by the Lee County Sheriffs Office as part of operation Iron Snare.
One by one, suspects who were wanted by authorities for a total of more than $270,000 worth of unpaid child support were arrested after arriving at a festive, football-themed location on Second Avenue in Opelika, complete with balloons, streamers and highlights of the 2010 Iron Bowl being shown.
The suspects were transported to the Lee County Detention Facility to await a hearing at which bail will be set, said Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones.
Theyre going to need to come up with some money, Jones said.
Iron Snare was the first of its kind conducted by the LCSO, but may not be the last time such a method is used to serve warrants for unpaid child support, Jones said.
Thats just the nature of the game, but if it will help us bring these people in and emphasize to them that they need to take some responsibility, were going to do that, the sheriff said.
Fridays operation marked the culmination of several months of planning by the sheriffs office, beginning in April with the mailing of letters to individuals from Auburn, Opelika, Smiths Station, Camp Hill and Columbus, Ga. The correspondence came from a service organization law enforcement officials dubbed the Charter Club of Lee County.
Suspects were told they had won tickets to the 2011 Iron Bowl and that the tickets could be claimed in Opelika, but that winners must bring the letter they were mailed and a photo ID of themselves to pick them up, said LCSO Maj. Tommy Carter.
More than 140 letters were mailed out, many of which were returned undeliverable based on the last known addresses given by those for whom deputies had arrest warrants, Jones said.
Everyone on the list we are seeking for unpaid child support is at least $30,000 and up to $75,000 behind in child support payments, Carter said.
Some of those arrested as part of Iron Snare stopped in on their lunch breaks to claim what they thought were football tickets, only to be handcuffed and escorted out to a waiting bus as tunes like Walk This Way and Another One Bites the Dust were piped over a sound system.
Do I still get my tickets? asked one suspect as he was handcuffed.
No tickets were actually awarded.
Two suspects arrested Friday were also charged with drug violations, and one suspect charged with not making child support payments had several hundred dollars on his person, Jones said.
We want to send the message that if you havent paid your child support, were coming after you and were going to get you one way or another, Carter said.
Beware of letters saying you won a prize in a contest you never entered in the first place.
curious if police can be sued for mail fraud since they sent a letter promising something that they had no intention on delivering?
At least he didn't say, "Go Tide!"
LEO moral booster. They must have a lot of fun coming up with these ruses.
Good question. Unfortunately, police tend to be above the law in these types of situations.
This was meant to encourage respect for the law among people who might feel deeply that it wasn't applied to them personally in a balanced manner, some of whom might be right?
this is horrible — the police state is in your face
mail fraud: yes
I’ve even read that if you owe on and have defaulted on a college load you cannot get a passport today.
Welcome to the USSA
I thought it was sad. Humiliating for those people. The last one had his act together, though—that was a bit uplifting.
Come on Alabama folks.
All you needed to do was to send that Child Support Check to your Second Cousin and you would not be in this mess.
Long to load, but indeed well worth the laugh!
Classic example of local skill and initiative. Good to see a report of law enforcement doing their job, doing it well, and showing innovation. Well done to these Alabama cops.
I'm happy for the kids that will finally get their money.
Yep! Get it before a liberal judge and when this is over, the perps will own box seats at the stadium.
11 arrests out of 140 warrant letters mailed out. Okay, so that’s only a 7.9% success rate but they made it so much fun for the arrestees!
Yes, as soon as you pay all the overdue child support payments.
Tickets will be available. . . . . For a fee of course. Yo daddy never taught you TINSTAAFL. My daddy taught me: :There Is No Such Thing As A Free Lunch. . . .
Also no Free Iron Bowl Tickets. . . . . EVER.
We’re talkin’ Lee County AL here. Liberal judges are about as scarce as leftover fried chicken after a family reunion.
They got what they deserve. We are blessed down here with a bit of a rebel attitude and very few invasive laws - unlike some cesspools of “progressive” local government.
But you don’t do somebody wrong - kids in this case - without paying the price sooner or later.
I’d like to see antics of law inforcement like this become a regular feature. Heck, the sheriff’s department could turn this into a reality show with minimal effort.
Yes but it is a federal statute. Could a case be made for breach of contract? Article said there were no tickets given, and implied that none were ever there to be given. If dolorean was found innocent because the police entrapped, could the case be made that a contract was agreed upon by both parties when they instructed the men to bring their ID and the letter to receive their tickets? Doesnt that imply exchange? You do this and we will do this? If there were not tickets to be exchange it certainly seems that this would constitute fraud at least civilly. Again , not a lawyer.
The percentage of the money they'll collect will probably be much lower than that.
These stings have been around for years.
They were all Auburn fans. That’s got to tell you something.
Quite a few local (county, municipal) police agencies were doing that during the ‘90s. They ran the same kind of scam for failures to appear from traffic infractions and the like.
“They were all Auburn fans. Thats got to tell you something”
Ya - it tells me the Alabama fans couldn’t read the letters they received. Remember, some Alabama fans think the way to suck up a loss is to poison trees at Toomer’s corner.
Seems like the takers might have a claim for the cost of getting to the event. Maybe their time is also worth something. In commercial solicitations, there is an advertising benefit the soliciting party receives, and some of that value might be viewed as “earned” by the responders. But here, what’s the damage?
I don’t think entrapment works — the crime was completed before the event. The police didn’t trick anyone into not making child support payments.
And how exactly does putting them in jail get them "their money"??? If they couldn't pay it before, they certainly won't be able to when they are in jail earning exactly $0.00 zip, nadda, a big goose egg.
Good try at spin, but it doesn't work. 2 of them obviously had enough money to buy dope. And one had a thick wad on him.
Most deadbeat parents choose not to pay.
Maybe a few don't have the means to pay, but that's about it, the others will cough up to dough to stay out of jail.
At least no pet dogs were shot for target practice
These people they caught werent innocent. They broke the damn law.
So you would rather have the police spend more tax dollars and risk their lives going after these scumbags when you can lure them into the net by aiming at their greed and stupidity.
Geez...I wonder about them people here sometimes. Some of you hate the Gov so much that you lose sight of things. And you all risk sounding like a bunch of lefty crybabies.
“I’m happy for the kids that will finally get their money. “
Yeah right. Baby Momma done hit the jackpot. I bet she gets her a new tat with that money.
I have a son that married a bi-polar girl. They had kids, the psychos and state seized the opportunity to take the kids away from them and make them fight for almost 3 years to get them back. All during the three years they forced him, thru this child support legislation, to pay the state while they bounced them from foster home to foster home.
Hardly the moral thing to do. They were victims of a corrupt system that does anything to control the children rather than the God-given parents.
Feminists rule these ‘child support’ courts and most guys are shafted.
This says “parents.”
How many were women? Just curious.
It's a darn site better than, "break into a residential house and at the first opportunity, fire your weapons until they are empty, in the general direction as everyone else."
This is not a first, by the way. There used to be episodes of COPS where they would notify those wanted on a warrant that they had won a new Large Screen Color TV. All the person had to do was come down to the Dealership and provide some ID so their product could be delivered. On another episode, they said they were delivering a FREE TV, and the COPS had a van with a BOX for a TV in it, which the cops hid in. The old "Trojan Horse" ploy.
When I read about a Sheriff's Department conducting something like this, I think we should Thank God that there are still intelligent, and resourceful men who know right from wrong, and how to keep our society on a path to the 'right'.
There are darn few of them left.
The day we find none, is the day the the doomsayers were talking about.
True, but the money is not the only issue. These offenders are breaking the law and, in this case, it is the women and children who are hit hardest. Any amount of money they force the deadbeats to pay to the families is better than ZERO.
Of all the 'laws' we have on the books, this is one that Responsible Men, Responsible Leaders support because the end result of abandoning women and children is..... why and where we are today.
But you dont do somebody wrong - kids in this case - ...
You hit upon the secret of a society and government that works. Have less laws, but be serious and committed to the ones that you have.
Not true. Visit your local Islamic Mosque or WALMART parking lot and they can tell you where to pick up a passport, for just a little xxxtra money.
Yeah, but only the innocent ones. This story is about the guilty ones.
Many of these women get more money from the taxpayers if they are abandoned. Men in America should get their tubes tied and be done with it. Let me know when we have Responsible Leaders and maybe I’ll change my mind.