Criminal

RELEASE OF IMPOUNDED VEHICLE WITHOUT FEE

A. Police personnel of the rank of lieutenant or above may authorize the release of impounded vehicles without payment of towage, impoundment, and storage fees. In arriving at such decisions, the supervisor must weigh the city’s fiscal responsibilities against the department’s obligation to the general public to provide fair and equitable procedures of operation. Generally, the supervisor may authorize the release of a vehicle if the vehicle was impounded for safe- keeping and the incident did not involve an arrest, violation, or automobile accident. Such incidents would involve, but not be limited to, the following circumstances:

1. When a vehicle was pulled and the driver was arrested but refused at the jail due to lack of probable cause or other legitimate reason.

2. When the vehicle is owned or is being driven by an individual who is entitled to diplomatic immunity.

3. If an owner has not been properly notified of impoundment or release of investigative hold, etc.

4. When an owner has not been properly notified of the recovery of a vehicle and given the opportunity to pick up the vehicle at the scene.

B. Procedure for Release

1. Police personnel who have knowledge of extenuating circumstances must notify their supervisor of such circum- stances. These facts must in turn be relayed to a police supervisor of the rank of lieutenant or above so that an au- thorized request may be made to release an impounded vehicle.

2. Verbal authority for immediate release without fees must be accomplished by calling the shift supervisor at the auto pound. A description of the vehicle must be provided along with the name, rank, and organizational unit of the person authorizing the release.

3. The supervisor of the Auto Pound must maintain a log of vehicles released without charge and must ensure that proper written justification is received.

Francisco Hernandez

Author Francisco Hernandez

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