Pulled over and accused of talking on cell phone while stopped at stop light. Accused of no ins. and suspended licence, car was towed to impound.

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Pulled over and accused of talking on cell phone while stopped at stop light. Accused of no ins. and suspended licence, car was towed to impound.

Call to person went to voice mail. Person flipped open phone to make sure call was not an emergency call. Did not talk on phone. CHP officer told driver his licence was suspended and no ins., which is not true. Licence and ins. paid up current. Officer took his licence and had car towed to impound at owners expense. 3 days later, person asked city PD about problem, officer ran license and everything came back clear. Impound charge is close to $1000.00 currently and person doesn’t have funds to get car released. CHP office said appears to be a big mistake, but car remains in impound til paid.

Asked on June 17, 2009 under Insurance Law, California

Answers:

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

I think the person needs a lawyer, to send just the right letter to police headquarters and maybe city hall as well.  Because this is nonsense, there should be a way that you don't have to pay for their mistake.  Depending on all of the facts, if this isn't corrected, it might be a violation of your civil rights.  One place the person can find an attorney is our website, http://attorneypages.com

The Fourth Amendment protects us all against unreasonable searches and seizures.  It's one thing to seize the person's car by mistake, but it's another to refuse to return it afterward.


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