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LOCAL Announcement :: Civil & Human Rights

Has Your Car Been Impounded by Santa Cruz Cops?

Vital information for people whose vehicles have been seized by city police and parking control for unpaid tickets. If it happened to you, please contact us.
SANTA CRUZ CITY PARKING AND TOWING ABUSES

Has your vehicle been towed or impounded (‚Äúbooted‚Ä?) due to unpaid City of Santa Cruz parking tickets?

Did you lose or almost lose your vehicle because you couldn‚Äėt pay all the $$ demanded?

Did you know of your right to an immediate hearing under Sect. 22651(I)(3) of the Calif. Vehicle Code?

Did you know that the authorities are prohibited from impounding your vehicle until they comply with your demand for an exact copy of the original tickets ( Sect. 40206.5VC)? Were you charged for a missing or damaged ‚Äúboot‚Ä??

Was your impounded vehicle valued under $300 (allowing authorities to ‚Äúdispose‚Ä? it without a lien sale)?

Were you informed of your right to object to the vehicle disposal (Notice to Owner, Sect.22852 VC)?

Did you attempt to get a ‚Äúpost-storage‚Ä? hearing under Sect.22850.5 VC? Was it denied ?

Are you aware that you have the right to two separate hearings if your car is impounded for non-payment of tickets.? The first (under VC 22651) is before the parking administrative hearing officer if you can’t pay to get your car released immediately--though this hearing is routinely denied in Santa Cruz. The second is the so-called post-storage hearing, (VC 22850.5)--which Santa Cruz authorities permit--but which you may have to pay for.

Did you know you had the right to recover any and all personal property from the vehicle while it was impounded at no cost to you (22851(2)(b) VC) ?

Please get in touch with us with your recent (within the last two years) experiences, which we hope to take before the Santa Cruz County grand jury. The usefulness of your story is vastly improved by any documentation (written records, copies, forms) you can provide.

John Golder (831) 818-0380 1080 Happy Valley Rd. Santa Cruz, CA 95065

or Robert Norse 423-4833 309 Cedar St. PMB 14-B Santa Cruz CA 95060
 
 


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Comments

Re: Has Your Car Been Impounded by Santa Cruz Cops?

Look at the two winners requesting this info... obey the lay, pay your debts, and you won't have these problems.
 

My car is my home, leave me alone!!

With 30% of the homeless population in Santa Cruz living in a vehicle, thats almost 600 people in the City limits alone who are affected by parking laws.

And they have become infinitely more restrictive lately, with hidden penalty taxes tacked on by a cash hungry city government.

But since losing your car is a crisis for any driver, its triple the crisis for a homeless person, as they lose their shelter and most of their belongings as well. And face it, its only a crisis if you are poor. If you are rich, you just pay the fine which is costs the same whether you are poverty stricken or loaded.

punitive ticketings and towings, expensive tow and storage charges, fines, and sometimes loss of work, this practice is just another way to torture and rob the poor.

So we find out, that on top of these charges, the City is not giving due process by providing notice of a person's right to have a hearing and by not offering to hold a hearing at the time of the seizure of their vehicle to the impacted, even when it is requested.
 

My car is my home! Leave me Alone!!

Since 30% of the homeless population in Santa Cruz lives in their vehicles, a large population of poor people are impacted by these tickets and tow charges.

And unlike the previous poster, who has plenty of money to pay his tickets with, people who are vehicularly housed are tripley impacted by these city practices. When their car is towed, they not only lose the way they get to work, but their shelter, and most of their possessions as well.

And have you noticed how parking restrictions have gone up all over the city, many of the signs appear to be placed JUST to discourage people from sleeping in their parked vehicles.

Emily Reilly's "NO PARKING from 5AM to 7AM" signs in Harvey West Industrial Park are a good example of anti-homeless parking restrictions.
(She's not so sweet and pleasant smiling from behind the cookie counter anymore, is she?)

And on top of this, we find out (thanks to Jhon Golder) that the City is not giving due process by providing hearings for people who are losing everything in a bureaucratic nightmare. I understand that when Jhon REQUESTED a hearing (which the code says the City is obligated to inform the person of their right to have a hearing, but doesn't)he was still denied a hearing.

This city practice amounts to a calculated plan to harass and deprive homeless people of both their money, their shelter, and their meager belongings. It is despicable.
 

Re: Has Your Car Been Impounded by Santa Cruz Cops?

The SCPD is providing the weapons and the military muscle to encourage and protect these car thieves, but let us not forget that the actual theft is performed by North Coast Towing and other local tow truck operators complicit in this criminal racket.

Sure they're there to help (for a price) when your car breaks down or to clean up accident scenes and re-open the roads for us, but when not making an honest living they steal cars for the government. Pure and simple.

And they should be treated accordingly. When you see a tow truck on the street, when you see an employee of North Coast Towing, you see a government-contracted car thief. And a coward, at that. They wouldn't steal cars if they didn't have armed police there to protect them, and to late refuse to take complaints against these thieves.
 

North County Towing? Re: Has Your Car Been Impounded by Santa Cruz Cops?

I think you're talking about North County Towing, located at 1210 Fair Avenue.

Along with Rossi and Life Saver (?), they assisted unidentified federal "marshalls" with stealing Free Radio Santa Cruz's equipment. When directly asked to join the community in resisting the injustice, they chose to side with the thieves.

BOYCOTT THEM!!!!!
 

Becky, Please Qualify Your Assertions

Becky,

You bring up some points, but fall short in proving them. For example, what is Emily Reilly's 5-7 a.m. parking ban at Harvey West Industrial Park? Why is this attributed to her and why does this make her a sinister cookie dealer?

Just wondering.
 

Re: Has Your Car Been Impounded by Santa Cruz Cops?

Emily Reilly is blamed for introducing the law at city council that initiated the signs that say no parking from 5-7AM. If you want proof, review the video tapes or the city council minutes.

The signs that say no parking from 5-7AM or from 12-6AM are being posted throughout the city. These signs discriminate against the poor and homeless because even those who are couch surfing without an overnight parking permit are being ticketed. Big rigs are exempt, according to some of the signs posted. Big rigs are not cited for frequently violating the sleeping ban.
 

Some Questions For Victims of Police Vehicle Theft

What do you do when they tow your vehicle for parking tickets? Some suggestions from tow truck survivor, Jhon Golder.
Jhon\'s_Good_Work__Flyer.wps.doc
Jhon\'s Good Work Flyer.wps.doc (7 k)
[see flyer below]
 

Re: Has Your Car Been Impounded by Santa Cruz Cops?

To "Huh"

Since all you managed as comment was to call names while hiding behind web anonymity I CHALLENGE YOU (and others ) TO STEP FORWARD in electronic or verbal debate on any issue of City of Santa Cruz abuse of constitutional rights, i.e.; parking control, zoning enforcement, planning quagmires, eminent domain/ condemnation, police cover ups and vehicle abatement, all of which I've had exposure to. I lived in this area from 1978 to 1993, owned a successful business, raised three sons, worked behind the counter as a City building inspector for five years. I've seen enough government hypocrisy, bullying, lies and mismanagement to write a long book or two (which I may do some day). I've also spent hundreds of hours researching the issues and processes that have affected me, my family, and friends.

Are you employed by the City? Or otherwise at the public trough? Do you honestly or naively believe that any person's vehicle should be seized without a hearing, that the vehicle's owner should be, as a policy, not informed of his right, that money deposited as ‚Äúbond held, not forfeited‚Ä?* should simply be surrendered- no questions asked or allowed- to the issuing and processing agencies, that the police should be allowed to act as armed enforcers for the prejudgement seizure of property to ‚Äúprotect‚Ä? (in reality FORCE ) payment of unproven or ‚Äúprima facie‚Ä? allegations of minor civil penalties. * City Parking Control office supervisor Claudia Carlson did not have a clue as what this fundamental legal phrase means or implies.

Parking citations were decriminalized by the State from 1986 to 1992 (AB 408). The Vehicle Code sect. 22600 et.al. is supposed to protect vehicle owners' due process with statutes that proscribe what can or cannot be in local parking/towing ordinances. The intent of these statutes are routinely abused or ignored by Parking Control, Vehicle Abatement, City Manager, City Attorney and the towing contractors.

There is malfeasance in these agencies and positions from bottom to top. On patrol City Parking Control Deputy Adrian Vandertuyn (silver hair, about. 6 ft. slim, tan, arrogant), who routinely handles Parking impoundments (bootings and tows) deliberately undervalues vehicles (<$300)to expedite their disposal before owners can reply or react to legal notification.

The towing companies are, interestingly, NOT paid by the city. In almost all cases, their only recompense is the ample ransom they recover from owners who can afford to release their vehicles and the proceeds from lien sales they legally conduct after owners' legal objection period has routinely expired.

At the top level I watched City Manager Dick Wilson commit PERJURY in the City's unsuccessful attempt (CV 145048) to get a civil injunction against me. Dick Wilson claimed under oath that he knew nothing of my numerous attempts to recover seized vehicles on the date 10/18/02 he handed me a letter denying me any access to all city employees and offices. This wrongfully denied my constitutional right to petition for redress of grievances.

Only five days previously he was hand-delivered a 5 pp. letter through councilman Ed Porter detailing my experiences and objections to unlawful or denied process at the hands of the City. Both Wilson and Porter damn well knows this! The City Attorney arrogantly had denied my right to two hearings. In civil court they worked very hard to quash my subpoenas and evidence that exposed the facts regarding my vehicle seizures.

The City officials (intentionally, I'm sure) reneged on a written court stipulation mediated by Judge Atack requiring them to respond to a limited number of my questions. They gave only limited incomplete response to 3 or 4 of the 25 questions sent them with court approval over the stipulated six month period.

I lost a towed $2500 utility trailer with over $1000 worth of tools when City Vehicle Abatement wrote the wrong license number on their towing records. (does that make me a ‚Äúloser‚Ä??) City police denied me any information where it was towed, and denied me right to a hearing because they had it matched to the wrong owner and description.

I doggedly persisted by phone and in person and made many fruitless attempts to get them to investigate their own errors through the CPRB (Citizens Police Review Board), the independent police auditor, Bob Aronson, Councilperson Emily Reilly, SCPD Lt. Vlassis, former Police Chief Belcher, deputy Chief Kevin Vogel. I was consistently stonewalled.

My claims letter to the City Attorney and City Manager went unanswered. In a written reply to me former Chief Belcher lied, claiming an investigation had been completed. Yet the police have never demonstrated that they did anything to discover their error or to prevent its recurrence.

I only discovered how my trailer 'disappeared' beyond my lawful grasp through a California Public Records Act request six months after the trailer was ‚Äúdisposed of‚Ä?. The City cops actually sent a goon squad to my motel room when I tried through 911 to contact the county Sheriff or Highway Patrol about the then-inexplicable disappearance.
At that time, the cops knew I wanted it, and knew where it was. They just used their force of authority to deny me any attempt to correct the ‚Äúerror‚Ä? they had not yet discovered.

There's a hell of a lot more to this frightful odyssey. My main concern isn't just the issue of thousands of dollars of my own personal property being seized and destroyed. It's the continuing arrogance, brute force, and legal invulnerability of city government as they pursue their ‚Äúprogressive agenda‚Ä? to ‚Äúclean up‚Ä? Santa Cruz. THIS HAPPENS TO DOZENS EVERY WEEK!

I've got volumes of documentation (names, dates, statutes, legal declarations, correspondence, and other details) that would open wide the eyes of anyone who really thinks their constitutional rights are safe at the hands of our city government.To the extent that people make comments and express interest in these matters, I will gladly elaborate on my experiences, proposed solutions, and community action ideas (e.g. initiative to declare aspects of parking control a public nuisance).

According to the city budget figures Parking Control takes in approximately $2 million annually in citations, while spending more in collection costs to empty the meters than the cash revenue in the meters provide. Parking meters are a cash loser without the contrived principle of ‚Äúcivil penalties‚Ä?. At Harvey West Park the fiasco of trying to tax public parking was indisputably demonstrated as the public nuisance it really is, in addition to being a powerful anti-tourist and shopping measure. Enuff for now!

J. GOLDER -CONCERNED CITIZEN
 

The Rest of the Story

[The preceeding post was incomplete. Here is the rest of it]


There is malfeasance in these agencies and positions from bottom to top. On patrol City Parking Control Deputy Adrian Vandertuyn (silver hair, about. 6 ft. slim, tan, arrogant), who routinely handles Parking impoundments (bootings and tows) deliberately undervalues vehicles (<$300)to expedite their disposal before owners can reply or react to legal notification. The towing companies are, interestingly, NOT paid by the city. In almost all cases, their only recompense is the ample ransom they recover from owners who can afford to release their vehicles and the proceeds from lien sales they legally conduct after owners' legal objection period has routinely expired.

At the top level I watched City Manager Dick Wilson commit PERJURY in the City's unsuccessful attempt (CV 145048) to get a civil injunction against me. Dick Wilson claimed under oath that he knew nothing of my numerous attempts to recover seized vehicles on the date 10/18/02 he handed me a letter denying me any access to all city employees and offices. This wrongfully denied my constitutional right to petition for redress of grievances.

Only five days previously he was hand-delivered a 5 pp. letter through councilman Ed Porter detailing my experiences and objections to unlawful or denied process at the hands of the City. Both Wilson and Porter damn well knows this! The City Attorney arrogantly had denied my right to two hearings. In civil court they worked very hard to quash my subpoenas and evidence that exposed the facts regarding my vehicle seizures.

The City officials (intentionally, I'm sure) reneged on a written court stipulation mediated by Judge Atack requiring them to respond to a limited number of my questions. They gave only limited incomplete response to 3 or 4 of the 25 questions sent them with court approval over the stipulated six month period.

I lost a towed $2500 utility trailer with over $1000 worth of tools when City Vehicle Abatement wrote the wrong license number on their towing records. (does that make me a ‚Äúloser‚Ä??) City police denied me any information where it was towed, and denied me right to a hearing because they had it matched to the wrong owner and description.

I doggedly persisted by phone and in person and made many fruitless attempts to get them to investigate their own errors through the CPRB (Citizens Police Review Board), the independent police auditor, Bob Aronson, Councilperson Emily Reilly, SCPD Lt. Vlassis, former Police Chief Belcher, deputy Chief Kevin Vogel. I was consistently stonewalled.

My claims letter to the City Attorney and City Manager went unanswered. In a written reply to me former Chief Belcher lied, claiming an investigation had been completed. Yet the police have never demonstrated that they did anything to discover their error or to prevent its recurrence.

I only discovered how my trailer 'disappeared' beyond my lawful grasp through a California Public Records Act request six months after the trailer was ‚Äúdisposed of‚Ä?. The City cops actually sent a goon squad to my motel room when I tried through 911 to contact the county Sheriff or Highway Patrol about the then-inexplicable disappearance.
At that time, the cops knew I wanted it, and knew where it was. They just used their force of authority to deny me any attempt to correct the ‚Äúerror‚Ä? they had not yet discovered.

There's a hell of a lot more to this frightful odyssey. My main concern isn't just the issue of thousands of dollars of my own personal property being seized and destroyed. It's the continuing arrogance, brute force, and legal invulnerability of city government as they pursue their ‚Äúprogressive agenda‚Ä? to ‚Äúclean up‚Ä? Santa Cruz. THIS HAPPENS TO DOZENS EVERY WEEK!

I've got volumes of documentation (names, dates, statutes, legal declarations, correspondence, and other details) that would open wide the eyes of anyone who really thinks their constitutional rights are safe at the hands of our city government.To the extent that people make comments and express interest in these matters, I will gladly elaborate on my experiences, proposed solutions, and community action ideas (e.g. initiative to declare aspects of parking control a public nuisance).

According to the city budget figures Parking Control takes in approximately $2 million annually in citations, while spending more in collection costs to empty the meters than the cash revenue in the meters provide. Parking meters are a cash loser without the contrived principal of ‚Äúcivil penalties‚Ä?. At Harvey West Park the fiasco of trying to tax public parking was indisputedly demonstrated as the public nuisance it really is, inaddition to being a powerful anti-tourist and shopping measure. Enuff for now!

J. GOLDER -CONCERNED CITIZEN
 

The Rest of the Story

There is malfeasance in these agencies and positions from bottom to top. On patrol City Parking Control Deputy Adrian Vandertuyn (silver hair, about. 6 ft. slim, tan, arrogant), who routinely handles Parking impoundments (bootings and tows) deliberately undervalues vehicles (less than $300)to expedite their disposal before owners can reply or react to legal notification. The towing companies are, interestingly, NOT paid by the city. In almost all cases, their only recompense is the ample ransom they recover from owners who can afford to release their vehicles and the proceeds from lien sales they legally conduct after owners' legal objection period has routinely expired.

At the top level I watched City Manager Dick Wilson commit PERJURY in the City's unsuccessful attempt (CV 145048) to get a civil injunction against me. Dick Wilson claimed under oath that he knew nothing of my numerous attempts to recover seized vehicles on the date 10/18/02 he handed me a letter denying me any access to all city employees and offices. This wrongfully denied my constitutional right to petition for redress of grievances.

Only five days previously he was hand-delivered a 5 pp. letter through councilman Ed Porter detailing my experiences and objections to unlawful or denied process at the hands of the City. Both Wilson and Porter damn well knows this! The City Attorney arrogantly had denied my right to two hearings. In civil court they worked very hard to quash my subpoenas and evidence that exposed the facts regarding my vehicle seizures.

The City officials (intentionally, I'm sure) reneged on a written court stipulation mediated by Judge Atack requiring them to respond to a limited number of my questions. They gave only limited incomplete response to 3 or 4 of the 25 questions sent them with court approval over the stipulated six month period.

I lost a towed $2500 utility trailer with over $1000 worth of tools when City Vehicle Abatement wrote the wrong license number on their towing records. (does that make me a ‚Äúloser‚Ä??) City police denied me any information where it was towed, and denied me right to a hearing because they had it matched to the wrong owner and description.

I doggedly persisted by phone and in person and made many fruitless attempts to get them to investigate their own errors through the CPRB (Citizens Police Review Board), the independent police auditor, Bob Aronson, Councilperson Emily Reilly, SCPD Lt. Vlassis, former Police Chief Belcher, deputy Chief Kevin Vogel. I was consistently stonewalled.

My claims letter to the City Attorney and City Manager went unanswered. In a written reply to me former Chief Belcher lied, claiming an investigation had been completed. Yet the police have never demonstrated that they did anything to discover their error or to prevent its recurrence.

I only discovered how my trailer 'disappeared' beyond my lawful grasp through a California Public Records Act request six months after the trailer was ‚Äúdisposed of‚Ä?. The City cops actually sent a goon squad to my motel room when I tried through 911 to contact the county Sheriff or Highway Patrol about the then-inexplicable disappearance.
At that time, the cops knew I wanted it, and knew where it was. They just used their force of authority to deny me any attempt to correct the ‚Äúerror‚Ä? they had not yet discovered.

There's a hell of a lot more to this frightful odyssey. My main concern isn't just the issue of thousands of dollars of my own personal property being seized and destroyed. It's the continuing arrogance, brute force, and legal invulnerability of city government as they pursue their ‚Äúprogressive agenda‚Ä? to ‚Äúclean up‚Ä? Santa Cruz. THIS HAPPENS TO DOZENS EVERY WEEK!

I've got volumes of documentation (names, dates, statutes, legal declarations, correspondence, and other details) that would open wide the eyes of anyone who really thinks their constitutional rights are safe at the hands of our city government.To the extent that people make comments and express interest in these matters, I will gladly elaborate on my experiences, proposed solutions, and community action ideas (e.g. initiative to declare aspects of parking control a public nuisance).

According to the city budget figures Parking Control takes in approximately $2 million annually in citations, while spending more in collection costs to empty the meters than the cash revenue in the meters provide. Parking meters are a cash loser without the contrived principal of ‚Äúcivil penalties‚Ä?. At Harvey West Park the fiasco of trying to tax public parking was indisputedly demonstrated as the public nuisance it really is, inaddition to being a powerful anti-tourist and shopping measure. Enuff for now!
J. GOLDER -CONCERNED CITIZEN
 

Re: Has Your Car Been Impounded by Santa Cruz Cops?

Thanks for covering this issue, Robert. It is important.

I was also happy to see your face on Club Cruz (instead of Lunatic Lee Kaplan) last week, doing what you do best and introducing us to homeless advocates, Tom & Thomas. I learned a lot from the show and will try to get more involved in this area now that I understand it better.

Peace, love and strength, bro.
 

Club Cruz has taped 240 shows, 7 with Lee Kaplan

I am the executive producer of Club Cruz and am responsible for its contents.

I have covered literally hundreds of topics, many of them on local issues. My association with Lee Kaplan is to bring out the pro-Israel side in Santa Cruz since the pro-Palestinian position is over-represented.

I wish the above poster had a serious criticism of some of the content presented by Lee Kaplan on Club Cruz (Tuesday nights @ 7PM on channel 27 and repeated on Thurs. nights @7PM) rather than to limit his criticism to calling Lee Kaplan "a lunatic".

We need more light and less heat on this issue.
 

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