Tennessee Tow Operator Charged With Auto Theft

A towing company owner has been arrested for auto theft after he refused to release an impounded vehicle to Knoxville (Tenn.) Police Department officers without payment of the towing fee. The situation arose on Thursday, January 6 after Billy Ogle, of Ogle’s Wrecker, in Knoxville, impounded a 2012 Hyundai Sonata at the request of a property owner. The car was blocking the driveway to a private residence. Once the Hyundai was at Ogle’s lot, Ogle notified the city police department in accordance with state and local law. An NCIC search revealed that the vehicle had been stolen before it was left abandoned at the tow site. Shortly thereafter, two police officers appeared at Ogle’s tow lot with a tow truck demanding that Ogle release the Hyundai so it could be transferred to the city pound. When Ogle refused to release the vehicle until he was paid his towing fee, things turned ugly. After an escalating confrontation between the officers and Ogle, Ogle was handcuffed and arrested for felony auto theft. If convicted, he is facing a sentence of 3 to 6 years in prison.

Keeping Tow Trucks at Residence Cost Homeowner Over $760,000

In 2018, Anthony Jesmer worked as a tow truck driver for his father’s company, H&M Auto Recycling (H&M), in west Tennessee.  H&M acquires automobiles and either disassembles them for scrap or fixes them for resale.  Jesmer’s duties consisted of picking up vehicles and delivering them wherever directed by his father.  Jesmer regularly kept H&M tow trucks at his house for use when dispatched on a call.  He sometimes stored vehicles at his house for delivery the following day.

By |2021-12-22T11:09:24-06:00December 22nd, 2021|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

Deadly Consequences of Parking Tow Trucks on Streets

In 2014, All Star Enterprises and Collision Center, Inc. (All Star) parked a rollback tow truck on a city street in Salem, Massachusetts. The truck was parked in violation of a city ordinance prohibiting the overnight parking of large commercial vehicles (over 4 tons) on certain residential streets. That evening, Dillon Renard was a passenger in a vehicle being driven by an intoxicated person. Renard was killed instantly when the vehicle collided with the rear of the illegally-parked tow truck. 

By |2021-09-07T09:12:26-05:00September 7th, 2021|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

Weekend Call: Engaged to Wait or Waiting to Be Engaged?

Tows are always needed, day and night.  This fact, combined with the fact that there are large gaps of time when tow operators are having to wait for their next call, makes it easier for tow operators to wait for these calls at their home as opposed to the roadway or the shop.  But beware: the practice of taking the truck home creates some legal issues which must be addressed.

By |2021-08-04T06:43:31-05:00August 4th, 2021|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

Disposal of Unclaimed Personal Items in am Auction Vehicle

Towing companies engaged in law enforcement towing, private property impoundment, or any other type of towing that results in the impoundment of vehicles, should be familiar with the towing lien laws in their respective states.  A lien law allows a towing company to maintain possession of an impounded vehicle until the towing and storage fees are paid. The lien law also sets forth the procedure for disposing of an unclaimed vehicle.  Typically, if a vehicle is not claimed, the towing company can sell the vehicle at auction to recoup those fees (or at least part of them). But what do you do with the personal items in an unclaimed vehicle that is going to auction or the crusher?  

By |2021-07-12T10:19:05-05:00July 12th, 2021|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

Towing In The National Parks

Summertime is rapidly approaching. That means hundreds of thousands of tourists will be descending upon the 63 beautiful national parks located across the nation. In addition to the national parks, there are 360 other areas in the national park system, including national monuments, parkways, battlefields, historic sites, and recreation areas. Most of those tourists will be traveling by car or RV, and many of those vehicles will suffer breakdowns or accidents while in one of the many park areas.  

By |2021-04-28T13:26:07-05:00April 28th, 2021|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

Put It On Hold: The Problems with Law Enforcement “Hold” Orders

It is a common problem. Towing companies complying with “hold” orders can find themselves between a rock and a hard place. A vehicle owner or his insurance company might be willing to promptly pay the bill to retrieve a vehicle that has been placed on hold, but, pursuant to the hold order, the towing company refuses to release the vehicle.

By |2021-03-02T22:16:26-06:00March 2nd, 2021|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

Arrested Drivers: Right to Request Specific Towing Company?

Any towing company owner that performs law enforcement towing is familiar with the term “owner’s request,” or OR. In the event of a vehicle accident or breakdown, before the investigating officer dispatched a tow truck, the owner or driver of the vehicle who is on the scene is usually given the option of indicating his or her preference for a towing company. An OR overrides the normal rotation list or contractual agreement the police agency has made for towing service.

By |2020-10-11T19:42:29-05:00October 11th, 2020|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

New Anti-Towing Group Launches Attack Against Towing Industry

Has the tow industry “stolen billions of dollars” from the transportation industry? Has the tow industry killed carriers and other small businesses with big bills? Are lawyers who represent these tow companies “accomplices to crimes?” That is what a new anti-towing group called the “Abusive Tow Authority” (the “ATA”) claims.  

By |2020-08-03T14:12:59-05:00August 3rd, 2020|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

Your Driver Thinks He Has Been Exposed To COVID-19. Now What?!

A TowLawyer.com subscriber recently informed me that one of his tow truck driver-employees had taken a trip to the beach with his adult daughter and her family.  After he had been back to work for a few days, the driver found out that his daughter had been diagnosed with COVID-19.  The driver felt fine and was not displaying any symptoms of the coronavirus.  The TL subscriber asked, “What should I do?  What can I legally do?  Do I have to send him home?  Can I require him to be tested for COVID-19 infection?”  Those are important questions in these trying times.

By |2020-06-28T22:08:36-05:00June 28th, 2020|Other Legal Issues|0 Comments

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