The 25-year-old woman went to Fairfax General District Court expecting Judge Lisa A. Mayne to preside over her trial on a drunken driving charge.
The prosecutor told her attorney, Corinne Magee, he needed some time to talk to the police officer. Magee told her client, who was there with her fiancé, that she could wander around the court building for a while.
While they were gone, the prosecutor told Magee that the arresting officer had been fired from the police department and that he would have to drop the charge.
When the couple returned, they were delighted to learn that the charge had been dropped, and they told Magee that they had made good use of the time. They had gotten a marriage license.
They explained that they were going to have formal, family wedding out of the country in a few months but wanted to go ahead and have a civil ceremony beforehand. They asked Magee if she thought they could get married while they were there.
Magee asked Judge Mayne if she would perform the ceremony when her docket ended.
The judge agreed, and the woman who had entered the courthouse as a drunken driving defendant left it as a bride.
By Alan Cooper