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Unreturned library book spurs arrest

January 24, 2009
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INDEPENDENCE, Iowa - An Iowa woman has been arrested because she failed to return a library book.

Thirty-nine-year-old Shelly Koontz was arrested Thursday night on a fifth-degree theft charge. She is accused of keeping "The Freedom Writers Diary," which she checked out from the public library in nearby Jesup in April.

Police say the book - which is about a high school teacher's effort to inspire students to write - is valued at $13.95.

Court records show library employees tried repeatedly to contact Koontz by phone and mail. A police officer even visited her home last September.

Officials at the Buchanan County jail say Koontz was released after posting $250 bond. No telephone listing for Koontz could be found in the Independence area.

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