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Council permanently suspends wrecker service

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Upstate Wrecker Service was permanently suspended from the City’s rotation after Greer Police Lt. Matt Hamby told City Council owner Brad Turner violated Greer’s ordinance with at least four individuals.

Turner appeared before Council and apologized. "I did overcharge someone by mistake. I discussed with Lt. Hamby what I had done and sent a letter to him apologizing. I offered to refund money but I haven't heard back.”

Turner said he was asking for reconsideration of the suspension. “I have been on the rotation seven years and I made a mistake. It can happen to anybody.”

The police department suspended Upstate Wrecker Service for 15 days – April 1 – 15 – the maximum allowed. City Council approves permanent suspensions.

Council voted for suspension 6-1 with Mayor Rick Danner the vote against. “I just felt the suspension could have been one or two years instead of permanent,” Danner said.

Hamby and Turner discussed the suspension during the public forum before the regularly scheduled council meeting. Greer Police Chief Dan Reynolds, during the regular session, asked council for the permanent suspension.

“The amount (Turner) is charging is exorbitant,” Reynolds said. “I really feel we can’t tolerate these violations.”

“It would be difficult to trust that future customers will be treated in accordance with the City’s ordinance,” Hamby wrote to Reynolds asking for permanent suspension.

Hamby said Turner specifically violated overcharging the single vehicle accident fee of $200 and the daily storage fee of $20 (ordinance 94-155) on several occasions. (The State Highway Patrol allows $28 daily storage fees.) “These are maximum values and towing companies can not add additional fees for mileage, cleanup and storage,” Hamby said.

Hamby told Council he documented four separate cases that Turner overcharged customers, the most flagrant being $655. Hamby showed receipts issued by Turner versus what the cost should have been.

Hamby said in two of the cases the vehicles were parked in Turner’s front yard instead of the storage lots addresses provided. “(Turner) said he took the vehicles to his home because his truck had mechanical problems.”

Other council actions:

 • Second and final reading of an ordinance to correct a scrivener’s error. The address of 161 Joe Leonard Road within the text of Ordinance Number 37-2012 shall be changed to “Joe Leonard Road”. Motion passed 7-0.

 • First reading of an ordinance to change the zoning classification of property owned by JKM Properties from R12 (residential single family) to DRD (design review district). Bill Dennis spoke on behalf of JKM Properties. Passed 6-0 (Wryley Bettis recused himself).

• Executive Session: Council considered one personnel item and heard two legal updates, taking no action.

 

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