Under the guidance of PA Turnpike Commission Chief Compliance Officer Ray Morrow, a retired FBI agent, the Turnpike is now handing over frequent offenders to District Attorney’s Offices. Four violators with alleged toll debts racking up to $315,000 now face felony charges are the first in Bucks County to face prosecution for not paying the toll.
Jarrett Stiff, 36, of Warminster is one of the four suspected offenders in Bucks and is charged with theft of services.
He is accused of owing the PA Turnpike $37,572.40 in unpaid tolls and $90,395 in administrative fees, to the tune of a total sum of $127,967.40. This is more than double the next highest amount owed by a suspect.
Building up more than 37 thousand dollars in unpaid tolls is no small feat; Stiff allegedly went through interchanges without paying 2,264 times between April 2013 and October 2017. The Turnpike has sent him 4,528 collection notices in their efforts to reach Stiff.
Bucks County is notorious among PA Turnpike officials for drivers not paying their tolls. Of the top three most frequently dodged toll interchanges, two are in Bucks: Neshaminy and Bensalem.
The PA Turnpike Commission has been cracking down on people who choose to drive through tolls without paying their dues, with help from Officer Ray Morrow and new legislation.
“Most Pennsylvania Turnpike travelers pay their toll bills and violations on time, but a few extreme scofflaws are ignoring hundreds of mailed notices and simply refusing to pay what’s owed,” Morrow said. “We have partnered with prosecutors across our toll-road system to pursue theft-of-services charges and recover unpaid tolls from chronic violators.
Act 165, in effect since August of last year, allows the Turnpike to request PennDOT to suspend a motorist’s registration if they have six or more violations or owe more than $500 in unpaid tolls and fees.