This might just be the most absurd littering case the world has ever seen. A man from Auburn, Georgia, was arrested in early 2022 for leaving flowers on his fiancée’s grave. Yes, the thing that every other person does for their loved ones.
Winston Hagans was pulled over on January 4 for an expired tag. When officers ran his tag, only coming back to arrest Hagans stating there was a warrant out for his arrest for littering.
Hagans had left a flower box on his fiancée’s grave, which is what led to the arrest warrant put out by his fiancée’s father, Dr. Tom Ford. Hagans had to appear in court, where a judge listened to the evidence presented by both sides on whether or not the flower box should be considered litter.
Judge Jim McLaughlin found Hagans guilty of criminal littering, which comes with a $50 charge for littering and a court fine of $250. As expected, the defense plans to appeal the rash decision. The city prosecutor informed Hagans he would not face jail time as long as he agreed to not place any more boxes on the grave.
Hagans lost his soon-to-be wife, Hannah Ford, in a car crash that occurred in January 2021. She passed away one month after Hagans proposed.
The reason for the flower box was because Ford did not like typical flowers from a florist. Instead, she preferred living flowers, which need to be planted and taken care of. Hagans crafted a flower box that could hold real flowers and pictures of the two of them together for her gravesite at Auburn’s Memorial Park Cemetery.
Dr. Tom Ford had ownership of the plot and didn’t like the box, which ultimately got Hagans arrested for littering. According to Hagans, Ford’s father never approved of the couple’s relationship. Hagans did reach out to the city for permission to place the box on the grave and was told it would be fine as long as he received permission from the family.