Getting a parking ticket is the worst! Especially when you realize you got it because the officer chalked your tires, and if you'd just come earlier and moved three inches forward, it would've hidden the chalk and saved you the ticket (yes, I've done that).
But here's something you probably didn't realize: When they chalked your tires, they weren't just planning to give you a ticket . . . they were violating your Constitutional rights!.
Yep. Ya heard right.
The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati just ruled that when a parking officer puts a chalk mark on your tires, it violates your Fourth Amendment rights, which prohibit unreasonable searches and seizures.
A judge wrote, quote, "The city commences its search on vehicles that are parked legally, without probable cause or even so much as individualized suspicion of wrongdoing, the touchstone of the reasonableness standard."
They made the ruling after a woman in Saginaw, Michigan sued the city for violating her rights by chalking her tires. So now the suit goes back to a district court in Michigan.
So does this mean the end of chalking tires?
Well, now there's legal precedent that could make cities think twice . . . but it probably means they'll just figure out a different way to enforce parking limits, like taking a photo of your tires instead.
Here's my issue with parking tickets: taxpayers already pay for the cost of maintaining the roads. If you live in the city limits (of dang-near ANYWHERE) you're already taxed at a higher rate than those who live outside the city limits, o taxpayer dollars are already being used to maintain a public roadway. Plus, my vehicle is private property, which--legally--no one (including government officials) is allowed to touch without my permission. So we have a privately-owned vehicle on taxpayer funded property...and I get ticketed (aka: TAXED) for staying there too long? It's utterly ridiculous. (I'm not talking about paying to park in private lots; I'm referring specifically to public street parking).