Library Fine of $10 Lands Mother of Southside With You Actress in Jail

The actress blamed a “scam law” meant to help police collect court fees and bail. 

Tika Sumpter Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Amazon

Can overdue library books land you in jail? They can in Johnston County, N.C., according to one actress who says her mother was arrested Monday for a library fine.

Actress Tika Sumpter, 36, who portrayed first lady Michelle Obama in the movie Southside With You, took to Twitter Monday afternoon to blast the Public Library of Johnston County and Smithfield in Smithfield, N.C., after she said her mother was arrested for having a $10 library fine:

 

Sumpter added in a follow-up tweet:

According to the Johnston County library website, the library charges a fine of 25 cents  per item per day for printed books and 50 cents per item per day for audio books, music CDs and movies. There is no indication on the public portion of the site that library fines can result in arrests.

Sumpter brought up a salient point about how laws like this get on the books in the first place:

Thankfully, Sumpter’s mother did not have to spend that long in custody. The actress tweeted a few hours later that her mother was free and said that every cop at the jail was in disbelief:

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