Duplicate license plates issued to 1,500 Missouri drivers

| Friday, July 22, 2005

Police in Missouri will have to do a double take during traffic stops in the near future – a printing mistake has left about 1,500 Missouri residents driving with someone else’s license plate numbers.

According to the Kansas City Star, the Missouri Department of Revenue admitted to printing 20,000 sets of duplicate license plates, 1,502 of which had already been distributed by the time officials learned of the mistake.

The error will cost the state about $55,000 to print new plates, in addition to the cost of shipping them to all of the people who received incorrect license plates.

“This was simply an honest mistake,” said Maura Browning, a revenue department spokeswoman, to the Star. “We understand this is something that is not only frustrating for Missouri taxpayers, but especially frustrating for those people who have received duplicate plates.”

More important than the mix-up could be how patrol officers handle traffic stops that involve the mistaken plates. But Highway Patrol Spokesman Lt. Tim Hull told the Star his department would be considerate of the problem.

“We’ll have to watch for those plates and probably be a little bit lenient if it comes to somebody else in a different location or a different car,” Hull said.

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