Walter’s Perspective: A Nit-Picking Parking Ticket

CHICAGO (CBS) — I have a tale to tell tonight about parking a car legally and getting smacked with a ticket.

Yesterday in Chicago, on the North Side, a woman showed me the ticket, and where she was parked when she got it in a diagonal space.

Because it was dark outside and she felt safer seeing the street in front of her, instead of through her rear-view mirror, she backed into the space and got the big orange thing on her windshield.

The ticket inside, the crime she’s accused of committing, was parking in the wrong direction.

Can’t believe it? Look again: parked in the wrong direction, whatever that means.

There are no signs on the street and she was not blocking anything, just parked in the wrong direction.

She was fined $25; told pay it, lady, or be hounded for it.

City Hall is hungry for money; looks like the squeeze is on.

Come on Mr. Mayor. Enough is enough squeezing us. You want more money to spend? Park your car in the wrong direction.

  • metra station parker

    I park nr the metra in gresham and imagine getting $60 ticket for parking without a residential permit on a street with one abandioned house and the rest are lots! Just recieved by hearing response…pay or it doubles! Thanks for being mayor old Rahm the Bomb!

  • Lou


    I do agree that there are some tickets incorrectly, example CBS New reported Tickets given to cars without city stickers. But the city that the car is registered does not require a city sticker.

    However I disagree with your segment where the ticket was give for “parked in the wrong direction”. In order to park diagonally, the drive must drive on the the wrong side of the street. I.E. To back into a diagonally parking stop, you have to get your car facing on coming traffic and then back into the spot.

    Back into a diagonally parking spot is dangerous, because you have make your car face on coming traffic.

    Maybe there are no sings stating “Do not back into parking space”, it to back into a diagonal parking spot at one point you brake the “Rule of Road”.

    • Jim Hamilton

      Dam if thats how you do it you don’t need to be driving period.

    • Roberta Waker

      Very good point; sounds like this particular ticket was justified. I know the City is strapped for money, but giving out bogus tickets is wrong. This will just encourage people to stay out of Chicago. When something good comes to the United Center or the theaters, as much as I would like to enjoy the entertainment; it just isn’t worth the hassle anymore.

  • joe strakonsky

    Dear Skippy,
    Think about why she was ticketed. When she exits the space which direction will she be facing? Is traffic supposed to stop to accomodate her crossing against the grain? And what if another vehicle came by while she was backing into the space? And lastly do you really think the mayor should fix the ticket or spank the P.D. ? Come on pal, as much as I normally side with you, this time you missed the nail completely.

    • Jim Hamilton

      Bottom line is no laws were broken here. Show me a law that says you can not back a vehicle in to a parking spot.

  • Ed Bergstrom

    Where have you been Walter? This kind of nit-picking from CPD has been going on for years! They have become a revenue center, not a community service. A few years ago I received 2 separate parking tickets for parking 13 1/2 feet from a fire hydrant. The law is 14 feet. Did the patrol office use a tape measure? I doubt it. I was just barely inside the yellow paint with my rear bumper. Then there was the time when I was in my car outside on an East/West side street of Water Tower Place (engine running with flashers on) waiting for my girlfriend to come out with carry-out food. A patrol officer walked towards me from Michigan Ave. and I was expecting him to wave me off. Instead, he walked right by without looking at me and went out of my sight for a moment. When I spotted him over my shoulder, he was off to the side and back writing me a ticket. How pathetic is that?! He could have waved me off. It’s been my observation that many Chicago Police officers have lost all understanding of community relations over the years. I used to have a great deal of respect for CPD in general. Not these days. However, I do occasional run into a decent and proper CPD officer and I give them their due.

  • hachipisali03

    You gotta turn your watch back an hour Walter, it doesn’t turn back by itself.

  • MADD

    My goodness!! Was she drinking and driving??
    Oh wait, that was YOU!

  • malcom

    “To Serve and Collect” – CPD motto.

  • Sean Walsh

    I saw this one the other night, and agree this has been happening for years. I got a new one for you though….isn’t it past the time for the city streets to be cleaned???? Without warning!!! I just saw a cleaner out on N. Albany. No signs, all the cars were parked, but, yet…a street c;eaner comes down passing all the cars, cleaning the corners and driving back down the street. Probably getting time and 1/2 or double time for doing nothing!!! My friend Jessy used to tell me all the time “It’s the city that ‘JERKS’!!!” Forget about the parking, look into over-paid, under-worked city employees. THAT would be a good one to see.

    • Jim Hamilton

      Start with your mayor

  • Jim Hamilton

    and I thought Al Capone was dead Rahm is proof of reincarnate

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