NY Daily News
Angry upper Manhattan residents accused the NYPD of unsportsmanlike conduct for towing their cars to free up parking for the department’s flag football championship.
The alleged offensive interference with the local motor vehicles came in the hours before Sunday’s NYPD flag football championship contest at Columbia University’s Baker Field.
Police, citing traffic concerns and accessibility for the disabled, towed 30 cars on W. 218th St. between Broadway and Indian Road prior to the law enforcement Super Bowl pitting the 40th Precinct against Midtown South.
But one Inwood resident said most of the newly-created spaces on the west side of Broadway were instead filled by cops going to the game.
“There were mostly civilian cars with placards on their dashboards or notes about the flag football game,” said local man David Thom, 44. “This was removal of cars for personal vehicle parking for officers.”
While the cars were relocated rather than ticketed or taken to a tow pound, it still outraged some locals who emerged to find the police had called an audible on their parking spaces.
“How can they do that?” said Anna Dominguez, 52, who lives in the area but was not towed. “You think you’re gonna leave your car here Sunday and everything is gonna be fine — and then you come back and it’s gone. Just because the NYPD wanted space for a game? They’re taking advantage of their power.”
Some cops left the notes in the cars to explain why they were illegally parked in crosswalks, in front of hydrants or in no parking zones.
Mayor de Blasio recently vowed a crackdown on placard abuse. But NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill said Tuesday there was no abuse in this case.
“This was a special event,” O’Neill said. “This was the flag football championship. The cars were relocated. Nobody was towed and nobody got a ticket.”
O’Neill did suggest the 34th Precinct could have done a better job getting word out about the towing.
“But there are special events all throughout the city, every day,” O’Neill added.
What a dick. Although he does reveal that the city permits too much privatization of the streets.
Look how many people showed up for this "championship game"
So this is strike one according to the Mayor's new placard violation laws. Right?