The rise of Netflix, Redbox, and similar services unsurprisingly had a significantly negative impact on the video rental industry, and many such stores in the United States have gone out of business in recent years. In some cases, former customers have found themselves getting calls from debt collectors seeking remuneration for DVDs and VHS tapes that were never returned to now-defunct stores.
A mere demand for repayment, however, pales in comparison to the experience of Kayla Michelle Finley; the South Carolina resident was recently arrested for never returning a copy of Monster-in-Law that she rented in 2005, according to Fox Carolina.
The 27-year-old woman went to the police to actually report a crime, only to discover there was a 9-year-old warrant out for her arrest. She was thus charged with failure to return a rented video cassette. This alleged transgression, a form of "petit larceny," is a misdemeanor under South Carolina law, the maximum penalty for which is a $1,000 fine or 30 days in jail. While the video store that requested the warrant has since gone out of business, warrants never expire so Finley will have to pay damages to the Pickens County Sheriff's Office if she is convicted.
If you're curious to see what all the fuss is about, you can purchase a DVD copy of Monster-in-Law for $5 from Walmart or Amazon, at about a $1 savings. That said, the film garnered an abysmal 16% score on Rotten Tomatoes, so you'll probably regret your purchase (as we imagine Kayla Michelle Finley currently does). For more information on this story as it develops, you can check out the original post at Fox Carolina.
Readers, what do you think of this woman's plight? Has the video rental industry's downfall caused you any odd grievances? Share your stories in the comments below!