ED Magedson – Founder
Empire Parking Services3393 Peachtree St Atlanta, Georgia United States of America
On 12/20/2009, my vehicle was parked at Lenox Mall in Buckhead in Atlanta. I had been shopping at this mall over the weekend as I was in Atlanta for a function on that Sunday evening.
Upon arriving at my car, a gentleman pulled up in a mini-van with EPS written on the side of the vehicle. He stated that he had to fine me $50 due to the fact that I was "illegally parked" in the parking lot of a mall that I had been shopping at! bear in mind that this was a regular parking spot (not handicap or 15 minute parking). I had left the premises of the shopping mall to enter a hotel right next door and came back. His justification for levying a fine of $50 was that the vehicle was left unattended as I had left their mall property.
I asked what authority he had to levy a fine on a private citizen. He then clearly explained that he was a police officer. Upon asking to see identification, he pulls out a plastic ID card around his neck and shows it to me. No badge, no uniform. He explained that he was with the City of Atlanta parking enforcement division. In the interest of resolving this issue responsibly, I paid the gentleman, as I am under the impression that he is with an official law enforcement dept. In a situation like that, I am left with little choice other than to accept his claim of being a cop.
This morning, I check my credit card balance and notice the $50 charge is posted to "Empire Parking SVCS", and find that this is a private company and also come across numerous other reports of harassment and abuse from this company.
So we have many several red flags here that I have a right be vent concern about:
1. I am a paying customer for two days straight at this mall, and still must pay a fine for parking there.
2. A private company has no right under federal law to make a private citizen pay for anything without what is legally known as "consideration" (a.k.a. payment for services or goods delivered). If there has been an impairment due to my actions, they must contact actual legal authority or take me to small claims court.
3. For this individual to claim that he is operating as an officer of the Atlanta Police Department is a serious offense and I can only hope that action is taken against the company if it is their policy to make such a false claim.
At the end of the day, $50 is a small amount, but as a matter of principle, money was taken from me for reasons that I cannot explain and I have to fight abuse before it continues. Furthermore, I will not shop at Lenox Mall for the forseeable future. I can easily take my business to Phipps Plaza or Perimeter Mall. This is was a shameless example of profiteering in the form of charging me simply for the sake of being a convenient target. It is a serious offense to me that someone believes they can whisk any amount of money away for no tangible reason, regardless of the size of the amount.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/21/2009 08:52 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Empire-Parking-Services/Atlanta-Georgia-/Empire-Parking-Services-Was-Told-He-was-a-cop-and-couldnt-leave-until-I-paid-fine-Atlanta-542955. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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