Putting Out the Butt

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A Pecatonica woman made her first appearance in court for a crime she says she didn't commit. But not just that, it’s a violation that she really didn't even know existed. Linda Tomas appeared in court Wednesday for violating a village littering ordinance.

This all started in early October when the Pecatonica Police Chief issued her a citation after someone made a complaint about her flicking a cigarette butt in the street. Now she says she's not only fighting a $500 fine, but also for her place in the community.

Linda Tomas says she uses a pop can to put her cigarette butts in, so that is why she was shocked when she got a notice to appear in court. After her initial appearance, Linda says she feels even more confused and helpless. She was hoping that the judge would have dismissed the case. Instead, she has another court date.

She and her husband moved to the area about two years ago and started Intelicomp Computers. Since this all started in October, Linda says no one comes in the store and her business is suffering.

The Village Attorney did not want to comment about the court appearance. Linda says she's also gotten nowhere with the Village Board or Mayor. Her trial date is set for December.