GRAND PRAIRIE (CBS 11 NEWS) – A showdown over high grass and city codes prompted a Grand Prairie man to take himself to jail.
“I didn’t know what else to do,” said 57 year old Rick Yoes.
Rick Yoes says he’s had trouble with the city before because his yard looked like this. In the past, he’s been able to bring it into compliance. But he says he was shocked to learn the city had issued warrants for six outstanding code violations he didn’t know about.
“I can’t really afford to pay a lawyer to fight it,” Yoes said. “I couldn’t really afford to pay them $1700 in fines that he said I owed him. I didn’t know what else to do I just turned myself in.”
After turning himself in, Yoes spent the weekend in jail before a friend payed off his fine.
Grand Prairie sent us a list of code violations tied to Yoes’ yard dating back to 1996.
The city says in a statement, “Unfortunately, since 2014, he has not responded to our repeated requests to jointly solve the problems, which has forced us to ultimately cite him for the violations…”
It goes on to say, “Our Municipal Courts are always amenable to work with citizens on a suitable plan for unpaid citations, but this citizen chose not to take advantage of that opportunity, either.”
The statement also made it clear it would not arrest someone for not mowing their grass.
A city representative said notices of the violations were mailed to Yoes. Yoes says the letters weren’t enough to get his attention and he ignored them thinking they were related to another legal matter.
“When you get a traffic ticket the officer brings you the ticket,” Yoes said. “So there’s no question so that you know that this is what happened. That never happened here.”
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