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Surprise bills for police service in Steubenville

Updated: Wednesday, August 6 2014, 06:46 PM EDT

WTOV9.com
JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ohio -- Not too long after police assisted her at a car accident, Steubenville resident Jessica Myers got a bill from the city's police department.
It was a bill totaling nearly $300.
What was it for? Steubenville city officials say the answer was made clear in an ordinance that was passed 3 years ago.
It's a city police service cost.
"I seen this letter and it was from the City of Steubenville," Myers said. "At first, I was kind of confused, like 'what's this about?' "
What she saw on the bill turned those emotions of confusion to a state of shock.
"It was for $279."
It was a bill addressed to her from Cost Recovery Corp.
"I was really scared and shocked," Myers said.
"Since 2011, city council passed an ordinance allowing the police and fire department to charge for their services on traffic crashes where it could be established who was at fault," Steubenville Police Chief Bill McCafferty explained.
It was Myers who police said was at fault when she hit a car in front of her. It happened when she says a bunch of cars in front of her suddenly stopped, trying to avoid a pot hole. Myers says she didn't get a ticket for the incident, but Steubenville Law Director Gary Repella says her insurance company is responsible for the bill.
"They said that they've gotten this a lot," Myers said. "The last one they had they said was a couple of months ago, and they received the same thing. And our insurance company does not pay for it."
While the city and the insurance company disagree, the good news, the city said it's not going after the individuals, only the insurance companies.
Myers hasn't received any bills like the one she got a month ago. She says the last she heard is that the bill is in the hands of her insurance company. However, she does not know what will happen if they do not cover the cost.

Surprise bills for police service in Steubenville


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