- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 18, 2003

The D.C. police department is harassing residents in a Northwest neighborhood by enforcing an arcane parking law. The law mandates that the front wheels of cars parked on hilly streets be turned toward the curb to prevent cars from accidentally rolling down hill. No doubt, such mishaps occurred more frequently when cars with manual transmissions ruled the roads. However, since there has been no reports of runaways cars, there is no need for such a law today. Yet, D.C. police have issued a flurry of tickets for the violation In the Cleveland Park area, near Rock Creek Park and the National Zoo. The commander for that particular police district, one Jeffrey Moore, says he's not sure why the law is being enforced but that he will find out.
We don't want to distract Cmdr. Moore during his search, but we would like to relay a few choice words from the some of the people who help pay his salary. Especially since it appears he is in charge, but certainly unaware, of what's doing with the officers under his command. Residents are threatening to contact Cmdr. Moore, his boss, Chief Charles Ramsey, and his boss' boss, Mayor Tony Williams about the $20 tickets. For them, you see, the 20 bucks isn't the issue.
"It's gotta be a revenue-generating thing," the recipient of one of the tickets said. "I've done everything I can to abide."
Another motorist said, "We're not on the hill," adding, "They certainly need money."
Indeed, one of the biggest moneymakers for D.C. coffers is parking tickets. D.C. moneygrabbers are so desperate, in fact, that they institute laws just to rake in the dough, like the law that prohibits residents from parking in one spot longer than 72 hours even if that spot is in front the home where they live and pay property taxes. And, in case you're wondering, heavyhanded police officer have been enforcing that law recently in Cleveland Park, too.
These tactics fly in the face of the vision of Mayor Williams, who, in recent days, proclaimed he wants to attract 100,000 new residents to the city. Well, Mr. Mayor, it's doubtful you'll pull that off, and we hope you tell your chief to tell his officers to stop harassing taxpayers. For sure, you'll have to up that 100,000 figure if officers continue to harass residents for petty parking offenses. There are important violent offenses in need of their attention.


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