MN man can’t get driver’s license even though he did nothing wrong

Mark Brown of Apple Valley should just drive without a license. Then ask for a jury trial when/if he’s nabbed by the gendarmes. If there’s justice in the world, a small group of honest men and women will let him skate.

KARE 11 says Brown walked into the license bureau in Apple Valley and walked out with a headache not of his making.

Repeating: not of his making.

The state is part of a multi-state computer network which officials check to be sure there isn’t some outstanding claim in some other state.

There is, in Mark Brown’s case. Just not that Mark Brown. The other Mark Brown, who shares the same birthday, was caught in New York state for driving without a license and owes $500 for doing so, the station says.

“I call the state of Minnesota and they said ‘yep, this is happening quite a bit, 10-12 weeks,'” he tells KARE.

State law prohibits Minnesota from giving him a license renewal until he clears it up.

So Brown has to go to New York state authorities and run the gauntlet of bureaucracy to get the situation resolved with a “clearance letter.”

That could take 12 weeks.

Brown says he’s considering just paying the other Mark Brown’s $500 fine so he can get his driver’s license from Minnesota.

  • Gary F

    I guess “due process” is on your shoulders.

    • It seems weird to me that full name and DOB in the database is the identifier when , let’s face it, our SS numbers have become the national identity “card” we carry. Seems to me if Mark Brown’s of new York is in the New York system. And mark Brown’s of Apple Valley is in the Minnesota system, it would instantly be clear that they are different Mark Browns.

      • QuietBlue

        It’s definitely a flawed system, considering the possibilities for false matches. Using the SSN seems like the more logical approach, with the caveat that not all states require it to issue a license.

      • Mike Worcester

        Well yeah that was my initial thought also. Do they have the same middle name? (Does the DMV typically ask for and/or have on file and SSN as an identifier?) And did anyone look at their photos so see if they were the same person?

      • Jim in RF

        Imagine having a generic Chinese name and having to explain the situation.

      • Jack Ungerleider

        Regardless of what’s done, isn’t technically illegal to use the SSN for anything other than Social Security related purposes?

        • You’d think, but my SSN was also used as my military ID number (stamped on my dog tags).

          • Up until a few years ago it was also the license number of an FAA pilot certificate.

  • Jay Sieling

    I wonder how many other Mark Browns in other states are having a similar issue. The birth date match makes it stickier I suppose. Recovering from identity theft can be a headache. But this is a different twist. I can imagine this devolving into a tragic-comedic farce. What if New York state demands identification to prove he isn’t the “other Mark Brown” but they don’t accept an expired driver’s license? The Brave New Workshop could have some fun with this. “Mark Brown feeling down – a man with out an identity”

  • Erik Petersen

    That’s not terrible legal advice, I don’t think

  • Guest

    Peanuts compared to getting off the No-Fly list. Until it is more reliable tough to take action on a simple mistake of any database……but we are the government and we don’t have to care.