Iowa woman jailed for overdue library book


The folks in charge of the Jesup Public Library in Iowa take their circulation rather serious, if judged by the arrest last week of Shelly Koontz for failing to return a book she'd checked out in April. According to The Gazette, local cops showed up at Koontz's home at 8:30 p.m. one day last week with a warrant for her arrest for not returning the library book "The Freedom Writers Diary." The $13.95 book was nine months overdue.

Before you send her a check in protest, though, know this: the library had called her four times and sent her three first-class letters and a certified one. After receiving no reply, a local police officer stopped by the house to leave the message that Koontz needed to return the book ASAP. The library finally filed charges on October 10th. When confronted with her crime, Koontz told the police she had been too busy to look for the book she'd misplaced.

Koontz was taken to the Buchanan County Jail where she was fingerprinted and her mug shot taken. She was held there until her mother helped pay the $250 bail.

The Freedom Writers Diary is the story of "How a teacher and 150 teens used writing to change themselves and the world around them." Perhaps Koontz can use her writing skills on a few reminder notes, such as "Return the stupid library books!"