Question about Parking.

So, have you ever been someplace, say Downtown in the evening and you park in a seemingly unattended lot with ambiguous signage?

And then you get out of your car, you get hassled by some guy who supposedly “works” in the lot asking for $6 for flat fee parking. And you look at him like he’s crazy because he’s not wearing a uniform, just a flannel shirt and jeans, but you give him the $6 becuase you’re afraid if you don’t give him some protection money for your car he’s going to let the air out of your tires and scratch the heck out of the paint job on your car?

So yeah.

Should you pay these guys? How can you tell if they’re really supposed to be there or not? Aside from handing these guys your hard earned cash, how can you deal with this? Where does the law stand on this?

9 thoughts on “Question about Parking.”

  1. You should ask the local council or other local government body – they will know if it is a paid parking lot and if not they can send an inspector or ranger to bust the flannel shirt guy.

    But I’m from Sdney so maybe that won’t work in LA.

  2. Just curious … why would you give $ to a dude in a flannel shirt who just walks out of nowhere and claims to work at a parking lot? To jojo, there are tons of these folks. They prey on people who obviously not from the area and who look like easy marks. I personally say things like, “OK, I’ll pay you when I come back and pick up my car,” and they’re never there. They’re not going to do anything to your car — they’re too busy looking for drugs to spend the time to do that. Or that was my experience when I lived down town a few years ago anyway.

  3. I would just not park there. I mean, if you don’t pay the operator of the lot, you’re taking a big risk anyway that you’re going to get towed for parking on private property. Do you do this regularly? (park in random lots with no intention to pay or is there more to it?)

  4. There’s a parking lot right next to my apartment where the attendant leaves around 6pm. On the weekends there’s a guy who shows up with an orange flag and mans the lot. Definitely not connected with the lot owners, but I sort of consider him a tax on the people going to the club across the street. -e;

  5. A friend of mine parked in a lot early one morning and paid a flannel shirt guy his money. When he left at the end of the day the real parking attendant was there. My friend was asked to pay again but he didn’t have any more money. It was messy. The attendant was really mad and threatened to call the police on my friend.

  6. The population of Los Angels County is over 9 million, the population of Sydney is around 4 million. So, no, you don’t call up the local government and have them come and ask to see the scrounger’s permit.

  7. I should note that sometimes the flannel shirt guys even have little parking stubs (official looking) and stay in the lot. Which leads me to believe they are legit. But then they are sitting there in flannel shirts. (How do you know he’s really supposed to be there?)

    I’m not saying a uniform makes it any better (anyone can “fake” a uniform)?

    Also, most private lots chain up their lots on off hours… so if a private lot is not locked then it would leave me to believe that it is open for me to park in. But how can you tell if it is an attended (for real) or unattended lot?

  8. Yeah, they can fake uniforms. When I lived in the “artists district” there was what I supsected to be homeless dude who somehow got a security guard shirt that he’d use on the weekends when he walked around to lots telling people visiting Little Tokyo on the weekends that he worked at the lots and to pay him to park. The reason I know he didn’t is because if you live there, you see the same homeless dudes day in and day out, and during the week he was just strung out like normal. I even saw him take a couple’s money once then turn around and walk off the lot before. So yeah.

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