WHEAT RIDGE, Colorado (CBS4) – A vigilante shamed an alleged litterbug on social media to prove a point, and now she may pay a hefty price.
Video of the 65-year-old Denver woman dumping trash out of her car into a parking lot has gone viral.
Rich Law hit the record button on his cell phone when he saw a woman tossing used fast food soda cups out of her parked car at the Applewood Village Shopping Center on Youngfield Street near 38th Avenue.
According to a police report, the woman told an officer she had just come from the “Tuesday Mornings” discount store and was feeling aggravated by how long it took for a return.
When she returned to her car, she tossed her trash onto the pavement knowing that it was a crime but expected store staff to clean up the lot, the police report read.
In Law’s video posted on Facebook, he can be heard saying, “excuse me ma’am… is that the most appropriate place for that?”
In response, the woman shuts the door of her grey Ford Edge and drives off, showing Texas license plates.
Facebook users wrote hundreds of comments bashing the litterbug’s behavior and shared the post thousands of times.
The video soon caught the attention of Wheat Ridge Police, who used the license plates captured on camera to help them track down the trash-tossing violator.
“It’s basically defacing public property,” said Sara Spaulding, spokeswoman for the Wheat Ridge Police Department.
Officers issued the woman a citation and summons to appear in court.
CBS4 reporter Melissa Garcia and photojournalist Tom Meyers stopped by the Denver home to which the woman’s vehicle plates are registered. No one answered the door.
Police said the violation is punishable by a fine of up to $1,000.
The costly lesson may serve as a warning to others.
“Doing the right thing and putting (trash) in a trash receptacle is really the best thing you can do,” Spaulding said. “I think it’s up to all of us to work together to keep our community clean.”
Law said he feels glad that the woman is being held accountable for her action and hopes the citation will make her think next time before littering.
She is scheduled to appear at the Wheat Ridge Municipal Court on Jan. 22nd at 1 p.m.
A judge will determine the amount of her fine.