When the city adopted a new anti-noise ordinance two years ago, some within City Hall expected its enforcement to be challenged.
City commissioners will decide this evening what to do about one of those legal challenges.
The noise ordinance allows police to impound a car if its stereo is audible 25 feet away or if it is louder than “necessary for the convenient hearing by persons inside the vehicle” near churches, schools or hospitals.
Two Sarasota residents were cited under that law in September 2008, and their car was impounded — one of 12impounded under the ordinance.
Mark Cannon and Latrese Allen sued the city in March 2009, claiming they were denied due process before their car was seized. Today, City Attorney Bob Fournier will recommend the city settle that lawsuit for $50,000.
Under the terms of the settlement, the city would suspend enforcement of the anti-noise ordinance until the city amends the code or an appeals court finds it is constitutional.
Contact Robin Roy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Currently 4 Responses
- See this open letter to the ACLU and the "lugheads" who cost the city 50 grand! http://www.city-data.com/forum/sarasota-bradenton-venice-area/1102157-open-letter-aclu-congrats-your-hollow.html
- The settlement should be paid by the commissioners who passed this law. Due process is indeed the issue here. By impounding the car before a civil judicial hearing, you're automatically guilty before proven so in a court of law. Take the $50,000.00 from the commissioners' salaries!
- Why can't city laws be written so that this doesn't happen, causing a jackpot of $50,000 paid to lugheads by taxpayers? You have to know exactly what you're doing before taking people's property away.
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