CINCINNATI - Marcus Jones got his car back from the Cincinnati police impound lot Tuesday.
Why it was taken in the first place made him furious.
"You had no business taking my car for no reason," he says of the police.
Jones and two other drivers complained to Channel 9 that they had been ordered out of their cars, and left to find a way home while their vehicles were towed away.
They were told it was because their oversized rims made the cars "unroadworthy."
Cincinnati police spokesperson Danita Kilgore says that's exactly right. "Somebody could end up dead," she said.
Kilgore says the big wheels are not a proper fit for cars that come from the factory, and that the bolts holding the wheel to the axle could sheer off.
"The wheel could come off of the car," she said. "It could fly up and hit another car."
Jones has to pay over $800 for the impound, towing, the citation itself, and a $238 inspection fee.
A mechanic examined the car, and his report says he found a lot wrong besides the rims.
The inspection document says the brakes of Jones' 1988 Cadillac were installed backwards, and that the catalytic converter had been cut off.
"There are certain criteria that (a) vehicle has to meet in order to make it safe and roadworthy," said Kilgore.
Jones complains that brakes and the converter were not why his car was taken last Thursday. He also says his privacy was violated.
"They ransacked my car looking for drugs or guns or something," he said. "I'm not no damn drug dealer."
Kilgore says the police are legally authorized and required to search an impounded car without a warrant, even if it's locked.
"That car, that glove compartment, that trunk is going to be searched," she said.
When asked if a driver can remove his belongings before his car is taken, Kilgore declined to answer.
"Now you're getting into a different issue," she said. "Now you're talking about search and siezure. That has nothing to do with wheels. I'm not going to go there."
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