Parking Ticket Scheme Gets Cops In Hot Water

Three years.

It’s taken three years for five Chicago Police Department employees to finally be disciplined for being involved in a scheme to issue improper parking tickets to a man from the south suburbs according to the Chicago Tribune.

This website has been following Jon Yates, the Trib’s Problem Solver’s dogged coverage of Mark Geinosky’s never-ending parking ticket saga.

First, Geinosky started getting a flurry of parking tickets issued for addresses he’s never driven his car. While fighting the tickets, he tried to uncover what seemed to be a concerted effort to inconvenience him with these tickets but the case went nowhere. He finally got the Trib’s Yates on the case which forced CPD to reopen the case.

Between the two of them, they put together facts and details which seemed to implicate Geinosky’s former wife and a few cops in an organized conspiracy to overwhelm him with parking ticket fines. Geinosky filed a lawsuit intimating this low level racketing in early 2010.

Finally, three years later the five CPD employees have been relieved of their police powers and given desk duty until they find out if the city’s law department wants to file charges against them and/or if the Police Board wants to impose further disciplinary action against the five.

So, this story is still not over.

Perhaps this debacle will finally come to a conclusion in another three years. Or longer.

Here’s the Trib’s full story, “Ticket case brings discipline.”

22 Responses to Parking Ticket Scheme Gets Cops In Hot Water

  1. Jeff says:

    It effectively is over, though. It’s almost comical to think that after thousands of counterexamples, *this* will be the time when a set of corrupt cops actually get punished for the crimes they’ve committed.

  2. Optimus Prime says:

    I love the photo, shows serious problems in the city LOL

  3. Capt M Plate says:

    hehe…that photo was staged…

  4. Pete says:

    Start requiring photos with ALL parking citations. The technology is here; there is no reason not to require it. This will completely eliminate this problem.

  5. Optimus Prime says:

    Pete, you are forgetting one important detail. The technology is expensive. Also, if you got your wish Ill assume the percentage of beaten tickets will decline dramatically.

  6. The Parking Ticket Geek says:

    Actually, the photo was 100% real. Because I took the photo. Nothing staged about it.

    However, it has nothing to do with the story. The photo was used for illustrative purposes not as a evidence of the ticketing Geinosky endured. In fact, most if not all of the tickets he got came in the mail.

    Sorry for any confusion.

  7. DoR Employee says:

    Pete…

    PEA’s already photograph 75% of the citations we write daily…

    Getting the Police and remaining traffic aides to carry and use them is a different story.

    Ser Co
    CPM
    PEA’s
    City Clerk

    All use the Autocite.

  8. Capt M Plate says:

    IDK about you Optimus…but my dismissal ratio for the last 6 months is Under 4% for all tickets I’ve issued…and I average between 1500 – 2300 a Month.

  9. Ticketed in Town Hall says:

    This case reminds me of my own. After filing an OPS complaint against a local beat officer I started receiving tickets for parking illegally on Clarendon Avenue, a street I’ve have parked on.

    But, they weren’t hard to beat. My car had been stolen, recovered and was in the possession of the Bridgeview Police District at the same time as I was supposedly parking illegally in the 23rd District.

    Try to explain that to the administrative hearing officer Mr. Policeman.

  10. Pete says:

    The technology is pretty much rolled out already, now all there is to do is change the law: no photos = parking ticket invalid. This will force the remaining holdouts to use the new technology. And as a side benefit to the city, will make it much harder for someone to weasel out of a legit ticket. The only ones who would be hurt would be lazy and/or corrupt city employees who want to write bogus tickets.

  11. Mark Geinosky says:

    I thought I would add my 2 cents into the discussion.

    The issue I have with this so called system is the fact that the administrative hearing officer (AHO) knew something weird was going on from my very first appearance. In other words she had seen so many funny parking tickets come past her desk that she was the one who pointed out that this was a vendetta of some kind.

    Yet she and all of the other 5 AHO’s said they couldn’t do anything about it. There was no option for them to escalate the false tickets to a Police supervisor or anything else. To me that’s wrong and any cop who knows the system knows nothing will happen to them if the AHO sees a phoney ticket. And we all know now that Internal Affairs won’t investigate parking tickets until a newspaper runs a damning story.

    That’s where the system has to change. But who will change it when much needed revenue may be hurt by going after bully cops?

    Mark Geinosky

  12. Capt M Plate says:

    Pete…it is not completely feasible to utilize that type of Ticketing Machine.

    You can only shove so much memory into the device. After about 100 photos most of the Autocites can not store any more until they are physically connected to a Download terminal computer.

    For the Police Cars its not a big problem..they have PDT’s in every Beat Car.

    Segway and Bike Coppers would not be able to carry them due to the simple fact that they have Limited Storage/Carry space already.

    Demanding Photos 100% of the time is Not going to happen.

    Assholes like the Town Hall cop and the ones that caused this story to hit this blog are Rare thank goodness.

    The fact remains that Title 9 (Muni Code for Traffic/Vehicles/Rail) covers more than just Parking Enforcement.

    Police Officers should be spending their precious time focusing on Moving Violations and Real Crime…

    Because if they are going to act like spoiled children running to get Rush Hour or Street Cleaning…I darn well want to see them writing ALL Parking Violations.

    Not cherry picking Municipal Enforcement and violating general orders by not doing their job properly.

  13. The Parking Ticket Geek says:

    Hey Mark!

    Thanks for chiming in on the discussion. Considering your situation is the subject of all this discussion, your input adds a lot to the conversation.

    And your point is a great one. There are some ways to bring situations like this (well, maybe not normally as INSANE as yours) to the attention of supervisors. There are certain people in both DOR and Admin. Hearings you can connect with, who can look into these type of situations. But, it’s taken me a good decade to figure out these backdoor solutions.

    The normal person who faces maybe one parking ticket a year would be completely at the mercy of a very inflexible system.

    And of course, it’s complete BS that it takes some high intensity media attention for the right thing to happen.

    Kudos to you for seeing this CRAZY situation all the way through. Most people would have got tired out and given up. But I have to hand it to you for not letting go of it. Thank goodness for people like yourself who want to see their government doing the right thing.

    Thanks again for your input and thoughts.

  14. John Oh. says:

    Parking tickets? When you register a car, it means youre allowed to use it on the road. So who says you cant? Who owns he roads?

  15. Capt M Plate says:

    John…

    The Chicago Department of Transportation manages the Road.

    Chicago Streets and Sanitation help Maintain and Clean the Road.

    The City Owns it within the borders of Chicago.

    The Roads are under eminent domain of the city/state.

  16. Remedy says:

    Bogus tickets are the norm in Chicago. Heres a nugget for ticket writers to chew on, May 24th. 2011. Booter writes 15 tickets to commercial vehicles overnight on the north side, and no…he wasnt a supervisor.

  17. DoR Employee says:

    Remedy…….

    Show me where it’s written that revenue Booters can’t issue citations.
    Oh that’s right….you can’t.

    Revenue Managers can Write.
    The Deputy Director of Street Op’s can Write.
    The Streets and San Ward Office Supervisor can write.
    The Cop’s are supposed to write…but they are lazy shits.

    And there is a Commercial Vehicle parking ban in this city.

    6-64-170D: Park Commercial Truck/Truck Tractor/Trailer/Semi-Trailer/Trailer on Any Business Street OR Residential Way except for Expeditious Loading/Unloading.

    Not on an Active Meter or in an Active Loading Zone = 125.00 Fine.

    So…Overnight or Day Time Parking without active Loading/Unloading isn’t Allowed for Commercial Vehicles.

    Next complaint about Legal Enforcement?

  18. remedy says:

    I wasn’t complaining, I was just stating a fact. I’m sure it’s perfectly legal for a booter to issue tickets. Just wasnt sure it was ok with the PEA’s union.

  19. DoR Employee says:

    Ah…I see.

    When you consider that ‘currently’ PEA’s don’t work from 7pm to 6am (and lets be honest, some don’t work when they are on duty either); I personally have no issues with Booters or Supervisors or Managers getting out their book and doing some.

    And if our union was going to complain, they should have gotten their heads out of their collective asses when the SerCo Contract was first discussed.

    Absolutely no reason to have a Non-Municipal Employee writing Tickets in Any damn city.

  20. remedy says:

    I agree, only municipal employees should have ticket writing authority.

  21. DoR Employee says:

    I’d reduce it as well.

    CTA has no need to issue anything other than a Camera Enforced Bus Stop Violation.

    TMA’s should not carry a Ticket book unless detailed at Ohare or Midway.
    Loop TMA’s should have ANOV books not parking ticket books.

    Crossing Guards should not step out of their Corners with a Ticket book, they want extra money during the Summer months? Get a part time job to go with their Part Time City Job.

  22. Dan says:

    How about “they” worry about criminals more and stop worrying about getting a bonus by writting tickets to hardworking innocent people?Greedy assholes!

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