May 26 2013 Latest news:
by Flora Drury
Saturday, July 21, 2012
A woman who found her stolen car just streets from her Crouch End home was horrified to find she had clocked up nine parking tickets because no-one had thought to check whether it had been reported missing to police.
Alexandra Lyons, 35, had her VW Golf taken from outside her home in Dashwood Road on June 29.
She reported it missing to police, then on Friday she came across it parked six streets away in Uplands Road.
But it appears the over-enthusiastic parking warden had not thought to check whether the car had been stolen, but instead continued to blindly hand out the fines – totalling almost £1,000.
Ms Lyons said: “You would have thought that, at some point in those two weeks, they would’ve stopped giving tickets.
“It must have looked a bit suspicious – a nice car parked with a parking permit for the zone next door.”
She says she expected there to have been more “joined-up thinking” between the council and the police.
“The police didn’t take any responsibility – they just blamed the council.
“It feels like car crime isn’t important. I was happy to find the car but I was pretty angry.”
Ms Lyons now has to collect her car from a pound in Essex after police removed it for forensic examination.
“I don’t see why they couldn’t have done it on the spot. It’s demented thinking. Everyone’s going through the motions of the protocol.”
A council spokesman said: “We were sorry to hear about this theft but pleased the vehicle is back with the owner. We will, of course, cancel the fines as soon as we receive from the owner the crime reference number supplied by the police when the car was reported stolen.
“We are working closely with the council to encourage staff to be alert to suspicious vehicles and people.”
A police spokesman added: “We are working closely with the council to encourage staff to be alert to suspicious vehicles and people.”