Using weed to pay fare yields trip to clink

Posted: April 04, 2013

IT'S NOT unusual for people to try to weasel their way out of cab fare, offering a sob story or sweet smile in hopes a charitable driver will go away uncompensated.

Michael Medvec was short on cash Friday night when it came time to pay his $8 fare on Chestnut Street near 2nd. But instead of a story or a smile, the 23-year-old Old City man allegedly made an unusual offer of payment.

He handed the hack a baggie of marijuana. Right in front of two police officers.

He was quickly arrested and charged with possession, a misdemeanor.

"This is certainly not the crime of the century, but it's in the top 10 on the silly-criminal list," said Capt. Brian Korn, commander of Center City's 6th police district and a 33-year veteran of the department.

It was just before midnight when two officers on nightclub detail spotted a taxi double-parked and approached to ask the driver to move, Korn said.

The driver explained Medvec refused to pay his fare, claiming he had no money. With the driver's and cops' permission, Medvec left his phone as collateral and went inside his nearby apartment to hunt for money. He emerged minutes later, asked the cops to leave and then tried to smuggle the baggie to the back out of the cops' view, Korn said.

"The driver said he was just willing to forget about it, but [Medvec] still tried to give [him] the baggie," Korn said. Korn wasn't sure how much pot the baggie contained but noted it was "a small amount."

Medvec couldn't be reached for comment.

On Twitter: @DanaDiFilippo


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