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Manti Man Tries to Pay Fine with Pennies

Manti Man Tries to Pay Fine with Pennies

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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Alex Cabrero reporting In today's fast-paced world of debit cards and on-line banking, pennies are almost a thing of the past. But they are still a legal way to pay for things.

Unless you're at the Sanpete County Court House.

A Manti man was trying to pay his ticket, and being a little bit of a joker, he did so with pennies. But the county told him pennies aren't an acceptable form of payment.

It's a good thing candy is still cheap.

Grant Peterson, Manti Resident: "All I have are pennies, you accept pennies?"

Otherwise, Grant Peterson would be in trouble. You see, he uses pennies to pay for lots of things.

But he's now learning he can't pay for his ticket with them.

Grant Peterson, Manti Resident "They said they have a state policy that protects against unusual forms of payment."

This all began when Peterson says he got an 82-dollar ticket for having a headlight out. Not being too happy, he thought he'd have a little fun.

Grant Peterson, Manti Resident: "I went into the bank and they said what are you going to do with 82 dollars in pennies?"

It's not an everyday request.

Grant Peterson, Manti Resident: "I go to ACE hardware, buy a galvanized bucket, sat in the parking lot unrolling pennies, putting them in the bucket."

His next stop, the Sanpete county court house to pay his fine.

Grant Peterson, Manti Resident: "I put it on their desk, casually walked out, and they said “Sir!” I booked it down the stairs."

And he thought, that was it.

Until he received a letter.

Grant Peterson, Manti Resident: "This form of payment is not acceptable by the court. You need to come by our office and retrieve your metal bucket full of pennies."

Now the court says he has until December 6th, this Monday, to pay in what they consider an acceptable form of payment.

The Bright Spot in downtown Manti accepts pennies. Customers pay with them, and now, they're talking about them too.

"Pennies are legal tender."

"They're money, same as a 5-dollar bill."

Peterson admits he's little nervous about what might happen... but he doesn't think he's doing anything wrong.

Grant Peterson, Manti Resident: "It is legal currency, so I think I’m doing the right thing."

We spoke with the Sanpete County clerk this afternoon. She says the county doesn't have an official comment yet. But Peterson still has to pay his fine.

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