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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Where Northampton County Can Pick Up a Quick $527.50

A year ago, The Express Times' Tom Shortell reported that there is a $120 million mountain of uncollected fines and costs here in the Lehigh Valley. Half of that mound - about $57 million, is owed to cash-strapped Northampton County. Theses are fines and costs imposed on Defendants who simply never pay.

Northampton County uses an outside collection agency to get some of that money back. Lehigh County uses a combination of an in-house collections agency and the courts, which retain jurisdiction over collections. Given the dire financial straights in which Northampton County finds itself, I think it's time to consider a return to a fines and costs court. This was a plank in Jerry Seyfried's County Council race.

Numerous criminal defendants simply lack the resources to pay. But there are some who are just thumbing their nose at the system. One case in point is Tricia Mezzacappa, who lost her Superior Court appeal of a harassment conviction on November 6, 2014. She owes the County $527.50 - enough to pay a week's salary to many of the County employees she despises so much -  and has not paid a dime. This is wrong, especially when she had the money to hire a gun rights law firm to appeal her concealed carry denial.

If the Court has information that a defendant who has the financial means is thumbing his or her nose at the system, that person should be required to explain it to the court in person.

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your obsession with this woman knows no bounds. Now you are trying to pressure the court system to join you in your game of revenge. I am sure the courts are trying of both of you at this point.

She is just not into you. Move on.

Anonymous said...

It is getting pretty old. Of course now the matt guy will weigh in and the sticker goons and the usual suspects just fixating on this woman.

Peter J.Cochran said...

Bernie, Just like the overwhelming number of traffic fines owed our Commonwealth ,but the deadbeats still drive! In my humble experience of my little exposure to defendants in 20 years, I would say most defendants could and would pay if there was a means of 'CONSEQUENCES".Real easy --work gangs in chains ,do labor that no one does volunteer for. I mean trash along the the river banks ,sludge in the sewers , type stuff. They buy booze and smokes and drugs and drive cars and go to the movies and buy fast food. They can pay .

Anonymous said...

freakish obsessions like this ususally land people in jail.

'pack your bags' as someone else said

Anonymous said...

I agree make her pay or lock her up until she pays.

Bernie O'Hare said...

This is the same matter in which she lied her way into getting in forma pauperis status.She filed a bogus application. Fortunately, Judge McFadden caught her in the civil cases, but she got away with it here. After lying her way into having taxpayers subsidize her costs on appeal, she makes no payments on her fine and costs after losing in the superior Court. Defendants like her, who are out to game the system, should be reeled in and given a choice between jail and payment plans.

As for trying to pressure the court system, the courts in Lehigh do make a greater effort at collecting, and that hammer should always exist for deadbeats like her, who have money to play but not money to pay.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"freakish obsessions like this ususally land people in jail. "

Actually, your failure to pay your fine and costs is what could land you in jail, especially since you can drive your Mommy's Mercedes.

Anonymous said...

deadbeats don't pay their bills. she will end up in ncp sooner or later.

Anonymous said...

As a Constable in Northampton I would love to take a shot at clearing these cases up and collecting this revenue for the County Tax payers. This is something that would need to be approved by the Courts to happen but it can be done as it is in Monroe and Carbon Counties.

Fred Schoenenberger
PA Constable Northampton County

Anonymous said...

This obsession of yours may be scary but it is also entertaining.

Peter J.Cochran said...

Ya,FRED, If you were on her tail or any other deadbeat --you would certainly flush them out and then the cash comes too! Bureaucrats and the culture don't see profit in production . They should hire you guys for the big money deadbeats for certain ,COMMISSION plus expenses ,think about what it's like to make a MILLION in one year.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Go fuck yourself little man with no dick

They dont grow on tress

They dont grow with pills

lets face it , your a pussy, ohare

no dick, no balls, and cries to the court like an infantile 5 year old girl

go fuck off

Anonymous said...

7;32 is there some where else you can rid your self of this despicable hate?

Anonymous said...

Funny how she didn't report this on her website, or how her libel matters with you and Express Times are going.

She only reports on the "important" legal matters, like Right to Know requests...

Anonymous said...

@7:32 You sure have some hatred built up. Pay your bill - it will take a load off. How does that Mercedes go on the snow? I'd take the RAV4, but someone else with a badge wants to take it too.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Bernie O'Hare said...

"She only reports on the "important" legal matters, like Right to Know requests..."

I read the decision, and it appears to me that she lost. The only thing OOR ruled on in her favor was that West Eastpn could not force her to make an appointment to view records.

Anonymous said...

She owes you a hell of a lot more than $527.

Is that right - she actually lost the RTK, but she posted that childish picture of Layman on his head? That would be typical Mezzacappa - laughing and strutting about sipping hot chocolate laced with vodka while Rome burns. Your PO's on the shelf in the bathroom - the ones the judge ended up upholding, I believe. Hoo-ha, yuck yuck, I'm laughing and I'm an idiot! She'll get hers soon, and then the laughs will be on the faces of others.

This poor old woman needs help. Maybe you can toss some scraps her way after she pays what she owes for defaming you.

Anonymous said...

Hmm. Let's see, granted in part, denied in part, dismissed in part. And she declares it an outstanding victory. http://dced.state.pa.us/open-records/final-determinations/FileHandler.ashx?FileID=15609

The town of West Easton agrees to make minutes available, and MezzaIWantThingsMyWayIsn'tThisBK? immediately appeals (as opposed to what a sane person would do - pay and pick them up). Thus she wastes a ton of West Easton tax dollars right there.

Oh look. She tried to make them send a fax, after the fact. Fail.

They agreed with her that the town can't make her come by at a specific time.

And then they dismissed her argument she shouldn't have to pay for the requests.

That's a 2-1 decision against her and she has to go down and pick up the requests, which she dearly hates.

What a resounding VICTORY! Uh, yeah.

Anonymous said...

The County Administration does not have the necessary authority nor the power of the courts to collect the tens of millions of dollars owed in fines, fees, costs and restitution. Only the Ccourts have the where-with-all to collect those monies and they don't want to do it. WHY????

Anonymous said...

This woman has no respect for the law, and no respect for the taxpayers around her rented apartment. She she get a job and start producing, rather than leaching off the public teet to meet her selfish goal of trying to make the town look bad. Go down to the office and pay for your damned requests instead of filing a legal brief. And she tried to get us to pay her legal bills. This woman is a public menace and needs to be stopped.

Anonymous said...

OOR records show Mezzacappa has filed fourty four Office of Open Records Appeals from June 2011 to date.

03 Partially Granted/Partially Denied
11 Denied
06 Appealed
13 Dismissed
08 Withdrawn
03 Granted

Anonymous said...

Each one of those appeals probably cost West Easton over $1000 on average. The ones that went to Commonwealth Court could have been much more expensive. That's around $50,000 in legal fees she has saddled tiny West Easton with.

Her record is horrible - no wonder she considers the smallest ruling in her favor something to celebrate. Clarence Darrow she isn't.

Bernie O'Hare said...

9:28, The courts decided long ago that a fines and costs court is an exerfc ise in futility. It will bring someone in who id=s under probation. But once someone is not under supersion, it is basically an honor system for people who essentially have no honor. The courts would bring them in, but in most cases, would collect nothing. I am suggesting that someone in the Clerk's oOffice conduct a review of open costs to determine if the defendant has the means to pay. If the thinking is that the person has such means, and the case is not ancient, I believe the courts should issue a rule to show cause why he or she should not be held in contempt. The courts can collect more money this way, I think.

Anonymous said...

you need some serious psychiatric help you obsessed pissant.

Anonymous said...

"you need some serious psychiatric help you obsessed pissant."

Yep, she sure does. She is not only a menace, but mentally unhinged as well. Who abuses a town office employee the way she did? Defames a reporter the way she did? Fraudulently transfers her house and conceals a vehicle that has been levied? Files a fraudulent PFA?