Federal Appeals Court Rules Marking Tires for Parking Enforcement Illegal


This has to be considered an interesting take on the fourth amendment. The days whereby the police could mark one’s tires to determine over staying in a parking spot appears to be over.

Of course a purpose of parking enforcement is to raise revenue. It is also to keep reasonable access to merchants and control traffic flow. Must we always be tweaking our amendments?

How is marking tires a search? The result of course will be the installation of meters, charging for parking, collecting the meter fees. All and all making life less pleasant.

Apparently our Firestones have more rights than we do…as my data is being sucked up as I type this. Of course the police can always get a FISA warrant now can’t they?




Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Marking tires to enforce parking rules is like entering property without a search warrant, a federal court said Monday as it declared the practice unconstitutional in Michigan and three other states.

Alison Taylor had received more than a dozen $15 tickets for exceeding the two-hour parking limit in Saginaw. The city marks tires with chalk to keep track of how long a vehicle is parked. Her lawyer argued that a parking patrol officer violated the Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable searches.

A three-judge panel of the appeals court agreed.

The purpose of marking tires was to “raise revenue,” not to protect the public against a safety risk, the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said.

“The city does not demonstrate, in law or logic, that the need to deter drivers from exceeding the time permitted for parking — before they have even done so — is sufficient to justify a warrantless search under the community caretaker rationale,” the court said.

[Taylor’s attorney, Philip Ellison ] argued that marking tires was similar to police secretly putting a GPS device on a vehicle without a proper warrant, which was the subject of a 2012 U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

Here is the opinion in the case

Read more


10 Responses to “Federal Appeals Court Rules Marking Tires for Parking Enforcement Illegal”

  1. JCscuba Says:

    Thanks Bunker, Great pick up, going to run it on my site and will of course link back to your page. Thanks, J.C.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Mustang Says:

    Your post today has generated so many unrelated thoughts in my head. The easy way around “unreasonable” tire marking is for the meter maid to secure a FISA warrant, which apparently, is a simple matter of lying to the court and then voila! But if “authorities” are not allowed to mark tires, then why are they allowed to tow away vehicles?

    We the people seek redress and protection of our Michelins and Fire-Stones while offering ourselves up for government wire-taps, picture taking, other forms of eavesdropping, data mining, illegally taking our data and storing it and from this, allow government to manufacture false claims against us? Seriously?

    Crumbs! We must be the dumbest people on the planet.

    Liked by 3 people

    • bunkerville Says:

      I had the same thoughts…. and of course, with Common Law, we have no idea where this decision as precedent will effect what ever comes down the pike…
      Apparently our tires have more rights than our data which they are sucking up as I type this.

      Liked by 1 person

      • the unit Says:

        But, this done for years and years because city ordinances called for limits on parking time and I guess city judges upheld (precedents) the fines. Done in my home town in the ’50s. So done for at least 33 1/2% of our nations life, my life time.
        The law is the law. Calling out to Larry Hopkins for monitoring tires and enforcement! 🙂


    • petermc3 Says:

      At least the kids can still use sidewalk chalk on the pavement outside their homes for fun…..can’t they?

      Liked by 2 people

  3. petermc3 Says:

    What is reasonable though is a patrol car parked on the highway shoulder viewing the three lanes of traffic flowing over the speed limit and the officer-( morphing into two to three well armed black ops clad special forces officers in their stealth carsusually on the scene) arbitrarily picking out and pulling over one vehicle for speeding. Here in NJ which is on the point system, that summons could be life changing as one’s insurance premium could increase by several thousand dollars. Too bad the serial overtime parking witch couldn’t have her vehicle towed.

    Liked by 1 person

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