Yes it was annoying to have to go a different route or completely around the crash site at Kathleen and U.S. 95 when D. Closs wrapped his truck around the signal post. Some people probably thought, “Serves him right” when the Coeur d’Alene Press announced that he would have to pay the Idaho Transportation Department back nearly a half million dollars even after his insurance paid for the rest. But let’s look at this from a different angle for a moment.
Mr. Closs, who will probably go to prison, has likely already ruined his prospects for financial security anytime in the near future, and having a half-million to pay when he gets out of prison is probably an impossible prospect to face. I’m not saying people should not pay for their crimes, but I think that the state really does not need his money more than they need a productive, sober citizen returning to Coeur d’Alene when he gets out. So let’s not glory in punishment before we seek to understand and help this guy.
People who pray, please pray for him! People who are financially secure, there are hundreds of programs for people who could and would be productive members of society if not for alcoholism and addiction. These programs need funding.
It is saddening that the Idaho Transportation Department is more concerned that they get their money’s worth (which is probably over and above what they needed to fix the pole to begin with) than trying to help this guy by being a little more reasonable with him and what he owes.