Bell, California, Under Investigation for Towing PracticesSep 11th, 2010 | By Editorial Staff | Category: California, National News, State By State News
The U.S. Justice Department is investigating reports that police in Bell, California, violated the civil rights of Hispanics through the city’s towing practices. The Los Angeles Times first reported the investigation. According to news reports, the city is cooperating with authorities to determine if Hispanics were targeted by police and ticketed or towed. Vehicle owners would then be charged high rates to retrieve their vehicles, reports said, to raise revenue for the city.
The investigation comes as the city has recently received complaints over high salaries paid to city officials and alleged voter fraud. Complaints allege that towing charges, along with other fees related to business licenses, parking tickets, real estate inspections and city permits, were used to supply revenue to maintain city officials’ salaries.