Des Moines police are cracking down on scofflaws. Sergeant Todd Dykstra says a specially-created team is already working round the clock to crack down hard on drivers who’ve ignored four or more parking tickets. Five officers, two meter-checkers and several reserve police officers are working to target the habitual violators. And when they locate them, punishment is swift and severe — the vehicle’s towed away. Dykstra says the program’s already in full swing. Today and the last four days they’ve impounded 40 vehicles, and gone to more than 100 homes or businesses and issued more than 40 citations, as well as taken ten people to the city clerk’s office to pay so their car won’t be impounded. The Des Moines police officer can’t say whether other cities will follow suit. They’re doing it because there’s 865-thousand dollars in unpaid parking fines since 1999, at rffive bucks each. Sergeant Dykstra says everyone they apprioach says the same thing — they never knew they’d had a parking ticket, even though they only go after those with four or more left unpaid. Anyone who thinks they may be on the list and doesn’t want their car towed can call the city clerk’s office or go online at www.dmgov.org.
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