Bill for Damaged Property Mailed to Deceased Woman

In Maryland, when drivers are involved in a crash, it is standard procedure for the state's highway administration to bill them for damage caused to state property.

However, the administration admitted it was not normal when they mailed a $640 bill to Sarah Marie Stebbins, who died in a single-car accident on May 29.  Her parents opened the envelope, which asked Stebbins to pay for the guardrail that her car collided with in the fatal crash, the Baltimore Sun reported.

"I was mortified, not so much they sent the bill," Tom Stebbins, the deceased's father told the paper, "it is what it is - but they sent us a copy of the accident report."

Sarah Stebbins,  21, of Elkridge, died in a single car accident.  According to the accident report, she had been texting while driving.

The demand for payment was written on letterhead bearing Governor Martin O'Malley's name, as well as the name of the Lieutenant Governor, and that of Transportation Secretary Beverly Swaim-Staley.

When contacted about the mailing by the Sun, the highway administration said the letter should never have gone out, and that the family was not required to pay the bill. 

The acting head of the highway administration, Darrell B. Mobley, called the Stebbins family to apologize after learning of the incident.

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