Move Your Goddam Car! Is this legal?

Here’s the situation (not sure if this goes best in IMHO or MPSIMS, but I’m sure it’ll get moved if it needs to):

My dad lives on a pretty quiet block in suburbian. One of his neighbors owns like, 5 cars. This guy parks his many cars in front of various people’s houses and leaves them there for literally months on end without moving them. People on the block are getting ticked off about it…in fact, someone recently took a hammer to the front AND rear windshields of his 1969 Lincoln Continental, and of course no one saw a thing.

My question is, can the people on my dad’s block do anything about this guy? Aside from committing acts of vigilante vandalism,that is. Is it legal to park your fleet of vehicles in front of people’s houses and never ever move them? Whether it’s legal or not, it’s rude as all get out, IMO.

If this were GQ, I wouldn’t venture an opinion, since I don’t really know for sure. But I don’t think it’s legal to do that. I think (and this probably varies by jurisdiction) that if you park your car on public property, you have to move it every so often. Possibly every 24 hours? Also, the car has to be currently registered and licensed, or they can tow it. (That’s how it is around here, anyway.)

Check with your local PD.

But still, assuming the cars are legally registered and running, all he’d have to do would be to periodically move them to a different parking space nearby. He might decide that was too much hassle though, and dispose of them.

Depends on the county, city, etc. I think.

In my town (Long Island), it’s illegal to leave a car parked on the street for more than 3 days without moving it. This was also true in LA when I lived there.

So you might try calling the cops to report an “abandonded vehicle” - at worst they’ll probably give him tickets, at best they’ll tow the car away. My guess is they’ll ticket it and tow it IF he doesn’t come move it for another 3 days (this was the procedure in LA where I had a similar problem with a neighbor).

Among white-trash type people, it’s a cultural thing to have several cars- often in various states of repair- rather than just 1 or 2 good cars (white trash motto: ‘buy American!’). It’s not hard to find used domestic cars with relatively low mileage for under $1000, which some people just can’t turn down, so they end buying more than they have room for.

I think he should just move to a wealthier neighborhood, where these type of people could not afford to live.

Huh? White-trash culture?

In many areas (as other have noted) a car can be ticketed and towed if it is on the street too long. Here it is twenty four hours. Try to pick a time when the neighbor is on vacation or out gone for a weekend and call the cops. They will come out and put a sticker on the cars. If there are still there when the time is up they will tow the cars.

Has anyone ever asked him to move his cars?

What exactly is people’s complaint here? Is it that he’s parking in front of their house, or is it that he takes up too many spaces and therefore other people have no place to park? As far as them being in front of other people’s houses, I don’t think that there’s anything you can do about that. In spite of what many people seem to think, these are public parking spaces and you have no more rights over the one in front of your house than you do over any other (at least where I live and, I would imagine, most other places).
If the problem is that he’s taking up more than his share of spaces leaving others with no place to park then you may have some recourse. I would guess that there might be laws restricting the number of vehicles a person/residence can park on the block. If so, then maybe he could be forced to either sell some of them or pay to store them in a garage somewhere.
In any case there is no justification, legal or moral, for breaking windshields.

Actually, contrary to davidm, I do believe you have a strong degree of interest in the space(s) in front of your house. Yes, you don’t legally have a “right” to those spaces, but socially it’s the standard that you don’t park your car in front of your neighbor’s house for extended periods. We’d be a lot better off without the constant “yeah, but it’s not actually ILLEGAL” thing that’s so often used to justify behavior that is clearly wrong (though, yes [sigh], not illegal).

I have no qualms with breaking the windshield of someone who has been as inconsiderate and rude as the guy you describe. Unless he’s a complete moron, he KNOWS what he’s doing is not socially acceptable, whether legal or not.

Though, you might try getting big sheets of poster paper, writing messages like “other people live here too, you know” or “nice car collection, why don’t you donate it to a museum” and use liberal amounts of Elmer’s glue to paste them on his (remaining) windshields. It’s reversible (though a royal pain in the ass) and not actually destructive… Use non-water-soluble glue (i.e. get a big tube of caulking and use it to plaster 'em on) if you want to make his life REALLY difficult.

I’ve been ticketed before for letting my car sit for too long on a public street, and that was in front of my own house. The cops came out, marked my tires with chalk, and returned the next day. The chalk was still in the same place so I earned myself a ticket. Call your PD and report the “abandoned” vehicles. The street is for parking cars that are used regularly–it is not a free-for-all public storage space.

Yes, well, while it may or may not be illegal to park your car in front of someone’s house for long periods of time (and I’m pretty sure it is) it is definitely illegal to smash other peope’s property.

I agree that parking in front of someone’s home for months on end is rude and in some jurisdictions is probably considered abandonment, but breaking someone’s windshield is vandalism, pure and simple. Has anyone actually asked the guy to park his cars somewhere else, like in his driveway and in front of his house?

Ahhh. Screw him. Slash his tires too while you’re at it, I say. If he doesn’t get “park your cars somewhere else” from that, he’s an idiot.

I really grow weary of living in a society where politeness and consideration of neighbors have gone out the door in favor of “but it’s not illegal…” I say it’s time we start working on the “it IS illegal, but it’s not wrong” front!

Please tell me you don’t mean that as it sounds. Supporting the destruction of private property in response to personal perceptions of rudeness? Doesn’t sound like a society I would care to live in. When the neighbors persist in having loud parties, do you chuck a rock through their window? Sheesh!

The guy sounds rude. Unfortunately, in the absence of a specific legal prohibition or basis for civil litigation, people are permitted a certain degree of rudeness. Maybe he doesn’t like the color you painted your house, or the way you trim your bushes, or the noise your kids make as they ride their bigwheels up and down the sidewalk all day. People who are offended are not empowered to engage in vigilanteism.

As I said, he may be rude, but if I lived in the neighborhood, I’d be more worried about the criminal who engaged in malicious property damage.

That’s the real question. Has anyone asked him to move his cars? On my block, every house has at least one basement suite and that usually means extra cars. There is a constant jockying for a spot close to your house, especially in the cul-de-sac where my place is because two of the houses don’t have enough frontage to park in front of due to the curve of the roadside. When things started getting ugly we left notes on cars asking the drivers if we could all meet and come up with a solution. We still jockey, but at least we all agreed to play nicely.

< tangent >

Last week I came out to find the local kids sitting on the hood of my car while they waited for their turn to rotate into the street hockey game. They all jumped off when I came out and the kid next door apologized. My cars a heap, so I wasn’t terribly upset. I told them that I didn’t mind, but now I expected them to wash my car on the weekend. When I came out Saturday morning the car had already been washed… even the hubcaps. As Don Cherry would say… beauty! Good Canadian Kids.

< /tangent >

Anyone else check the good doctor’s location, and breath a sigh of relief when they realized he didn’t live anywhere near your neighborhood?

It bears repeating: Has anyone asked him to move any of the cars?

I say that if they are registered and operational, too damn bad! You want the spot? Beat him to it! Now, if they are junk, unregisterd and not working, then have them legally towed.

Hey surreal! Just what the hell is “white-trash culture”? Oh never mind answering that. I just remembered that you are an

Fagjunk Theology: Not just for sodomite propagandists anymore.

Well, Dinsdale, I meant exactly what you thought I did, and I still have no qualms about it… I suggested a less destructive way to accomplish much the same thing, which I’m sure is also illegal.

Tough. How about you drive around Hunt’s Point with some friends with your windows down and doors unlocked… I’ll bet you “but that’s illegal!” won’t do you a lotta good there either.

I happen to live in a neighborhood heavily populated by nice Sicilian gentlemen, mostly retired from the waste management industry… kapisch?

It’s a lovely, clean, pleasant, safe, polite, diverse, virtually crime-free community. I have great neighbors, and I don’t worry about the kids being outside playing after dark. I don’t worry about someone breaking into my house. I don’t worry about some whack-job molesting people. Why? Because there are some folks around who take care of things if it starts to go the other way – I’m guessing at the behest of those retired trash guys… And taking care of things doesn’t mean calling the police to have abandoned junkers ticketed I can assure you.

You can now be aghast and enumerate all the downsides and create horror-show strawman about “yeah, but what if these guys decide…” Have at it, but I’m not moving. I LOVE my neighborhood the way it is and it’s been that way for about 40 years now.

gosh, I wonder what happened to the rest of my last post? :smiley:

Somebodys gotta go back and git a shitload of dimes!

And Dinsdale was glad to not live near me BEFORE I said all that! Wow! Trust me, D, no criminals are stupid enough to try anything where I live, 'cuz getting their windows broke would be what they’d BEG for…

Remember, if you can’t start exacting revenge on whoever you want based on a personal perception of unjust-ness, without being bothered to consult the laws and court system, then the terrorists have already…


[sub]note, I’m not comparing anyone here to the terrorists, I’m merely stating that perhaps one man’s vigilante justice is another man’s random act of violence (or destruction)[/sub]

My In-laws have a neighbor that does the same thing.
The cars have to be moved once a day, per city code.

So, everyday, the guy goes out there and shuffles his cars around.
There is NOTHING the city can do.

The strangest thing is, he only uses one car. The other 5 I have never seen in operation.