More than 100 cars towed during Vols game

6:26 AM, Oct 24, 2010   |    comments
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Hundreds of people were stranded on Neyland Drive Saturday night after the game. Their cars were towed for being parked illegally.

As drivers walked down the road toward their cars, they quickly realized they were gone. People who witnessed the towings told 10 News between eight and 10 tow trucks worked with police officers to remove the vehicles, which were parked on the side of Neyland Drive west of Neyland Stadium.

Some drivers said they've been parking along that stretch of the road for years and have never had a problem.  Jimmy Riner, and several other drivers, said at least 100 cars were parked in that location and towed.

"They should have never pulled vehicles like that when there are no 'no parking' signs in the area where we parked," said Riner.

Jimmy Carter and his wife Mary parked along the same stretch of road during the game. Carter also said he didn't see any indication he couldn't park there.

"My wife's on crutches and we were trying to catch the train here. It seemed like a good place to park. We're very disappointed in the City of Knoxville," said Carter.

Other drivers said they saw 'no parking' signs. They decided to park there anyway because other cars were there first.

"It killed it. It killed my night," said Ty Gordon

Amy Shelton's car wasn't towed, but she watched vehicles taken away from the area.  She said tow truck operators used force to move one car. She recorded it on her cell phone.

"They pushed the window down to get in and jimmy it and the alarm went off," said Shelton.

Police on scene told drivers to call the City of Knoxville Impound Lot in East Knoxville, and gave them the phone number.  Drivers said they were not offered any additional assistance to get their vehicles back.

Many drivers called taxis, but were forced to wait for them up to an hour.  They said police told them no cabs were allowed through Neyland until game traffic cleared out.  One group of nearly two dozen people hired a bus to take them to the impound lot.  There they joined a long line of frustrated, angry people wanting their cars back.

Wheel-chair bound Joe Tate was in that line.

"We're all the way from Alabama and we got nothing. We're just out to dry," said Tate.

Some drivers didn't get their cars back until after midnight on Sunday.  Drivers told 10News they had to pay an $85 fine.  An impount lot employee estimated that more than 100 cars were impounded, but that number could be higher.

Knoxville Police said they won't have a final count of how many vehicles were towed until Monday.

A viewer alerted 10News to this story during the football game.  You can send us story tips anytime at newstips@wbir.com.

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