Name Twin's Misdeeds Plague a Good Driver

Again, Registry's mixup triggers bid to pull license

By Ralph Ranalli, Globe Staff

Nearly everyone has to share a name with someone, somewhere. David Edward Greene just wishes his counterpart hadn't been such a nightmare on the roadways.

For the third time in 10 years, Greene, who lives in Arlington, is facing torment as his license comes due for renewal. The Registry of Motor Vehicles has sent him notice that it is about to revoke his license because of unresolved out-of-state driving offenses. That means Greene, a driver with one ticket in 25 years, has to prove he is not David Eugene Greene of Florida, who has the same birthdate but is a convicted sex offender whose license was revoked for multiple drunk driving arrests and court defaults.

Previously, Greene of Arlington has presented a range of documentation, including a letter from Florida motor vehicle officials to prove he is not a scofflaw from the Sunshine State. In the past, Massachusetts officials eventually granted him a new license -- although once it happened after he inadvertently drove for several weeks with a revoked license, risking arrest and the impoundment of his car if he was pulled over.

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[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: This type of thing used to happen a lot in Chicago, when the Cook County States Attorney would issue a warrant for someone with a very common name. Now in recent years, when a person (who is _NOT_ the wanted person) gets arrested and hassled, they are permitted to apply for a boilerplate letter which announces to one and all this particular [common name] is not wanted by law enforcement _at this time_. And it gives a phone number to call for verification. The common name person is 'encouraged' to carry this letter in his possession (his wallet perhaps) at all times, and present it to arresting officers, in the event of a mixup on his social security number or other details. PAT]

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Monty Solomon
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