Grandma busted for speeding thanks the Idaho trooper who caught her

August 1, 2014

(Idaho State Police)

“Dear Idaho State Police,” begins a note written by the World’s Greatest Grandma — or at least the Greatest Grandma You Will Read About Today — who was stopped for speeding in Idaho last month, then dropped a thank-you to the state police.

“It’s, like, not what you want to be known for,” Tana Baumler said Friday in a phone call with The Post. “But it was a good teaching moment.”

Baumler, of Bothell, Wash., had two grandchildren, ages 4 and 7, in the car when she was ticketed for excessive speed July 6. Trooper Mike Nielson pulled her over that morning but put the children at ease during the stop, Baumler said, talking with them and giving them stickers.

Baumler owned up to the mistake and then talked with her grandkids about the citation. They discussed what had happened, and one of the children complimented Nielson’s “customer service.”

“[One granddaughter] said ‘are you mad at the police officer?’ ” Baumler recounted. “I said ‘No, Grandma made a bad choice. You make bad choices, you have to pay the consequences.’ ”

In this case, the consequence was a ticket. While writing the check, Baumler thought of the restaurant she owns in the Seattle area, and how much she likes when customers compliment her staff. So she included one with her ticket payment.

“It was unexpected,” Nielson told The Post. “It’s better than a complaint, so that sure helps.”

Sarah Larimer is a general assignment reporter for the Washington Post.
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Sarah Larimer · August 1, 2014