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Charged with Disorderly Conduct for paying his bill ...

VERNAL, Utah – A Utah man has been cited on a charge of disorderly conduct after paying for a disputed medical bill with 2,500 pennies.

The Deseret News of Salt Lake City reports Jason West went to Basin Clinic in Vernal on May 27 prepared to dispute an outstanding $25 bill.

Assistant Vernal Police Chief Keith Campbell says that after asking staff members whether they accepted cash, West dumped 2,500 pennies on the counter and demanded that staff count them.

Campbell says the incident upset staff because pennies were strewn about the counter and floor, and West's action served "no legitimate purpose." 

Police later issued the 38-year-old West a citation for disorderly conduct. That carries a fine of as much as $140. Or 14,000 pennies.


Thoughts? Should he have been charged? 



*if this has already been posted, I will delete. I saw this on FB and thought it was interesting so I posted it here without looking at the other questions.


Asked by SpiritedWitch at 8:18 AM on Jun. 6, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 40 (118,000 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (23)
  • to be charged with disorderly conduct, i'm betting a pretty penny there's more to the story than just strewn pennies across the counter/floor...or the staff is completely useless and wimpy. a dispute over the bill was already in motion, so perhaps his disorderly conduct was pre-meditated, seeing that he had 2500pennies on his person. however, money is money..he paid the bill.

    Answer by dullscissors at 8:24 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • No he should not have been charged. He paid his bill and under our constitution he has a right to his "voice" even if it was in pennies! They missed the point..the point was/is "payment" regardless. His charges was a show of who has more power and no matter what "you/he" will comply right down to the last shove. Its a shame that we fought the war with England as we "the America's" are beginning to act just like the very thing our founding fore fathers fought so hard against...

    Answer by lacyjones at 8:28 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • West's action served "no legitimate purpose."

    If this was the case then he should get a refund, right?  If I pay something and it doesn't show a legit purpose I think I should get my money back.  And no, I don't think he should be charged with anything.


    Answer by scout_mom at 8:34 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • No he shouldn't be charged! That place probably hounded him relentlessly for their $25. Maybe they upset him. Their job is to take money and even if he was kind of an asshole about it, he paid his bill. Sorry it "upset" the staff, but pennies are legal tender and it sucks that they had to count 2,500 of them. If they are that "upset" about having to count pennies god forbid pick them up, maybe they need to either grow a pair or find a job that doesn't piss off people.

    Answer by Izsarejman at 9:23 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • IDK, if I were being charged $25 for something I felt I shouldn't have to pay for and I am being threatened with bill collection and it effecting my credit, I might be tempted to do the same. As for using pennies, I didn't realize that they were only for children and not for grown ups. It all spends the same way. Perhaps the change was all he had and maybe the business should just be happy that a bill got paid.  There is content to this story that is missing from the article. 


    Answer by QuinnMae at 9:25 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • Oh good grief. The staff doesn't even have to count the pennies..they can bag them up and have the coin counter do it at the bank. I think this is much ado about nothing. They should just be glad it wasn't a thousand dollars. When I was a kid there was a man in town that had a dispute over his property taxes..he paid the $1000 bill in pennies and he didn't get in trouble for it.


    Answer by yourspecialkid at 10:38 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • it sounds like he was being an asshole, however i dont think his actions warranted a disorderly conduct charge.

    Answer by tnm786 at 8:28 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • I think she should...

    he should of atleast had them in a container or something... it seems exsessive that he "threw" them ont he counter and such....

    It reminds me of the part in the movie " Confessions of a Shopaholic " lol..

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:25 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • also, not sure why my answer was anon lol

    Answer by 2lilbumblebees at 8:26 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • I agree with dull, money is money and he paid his bill. I am reasonably sure there is more to the story. If there isn't more to the story on his behalf then I don't really get the reason for the charges.

    I also don't really see what the big deal is. It shouldn't take the employees that long to count $25 in pennies.


    Answer by QuinnMae at 8:48 AM on Jun. 6, 2011