4/26/2006Peoria, Illinois Enacts Car Confiscation Ordinance
Peoria, Illinois passes ordinance to confiscate cars with loud stereos without due process.
The city of Peoria, Illinois hopes to raise funds with an ordinance allowing it to seize vehicles with loud stereos beginning June 1. With a 6-5 vote yesterday, the city council directed police to confiscate any car from which "sound can be heard from seventy-five feet or more." The city will collect $105 in fees for the first offense and $355 on subsequent offenses without first offering the accused a defense in a proper court of law.
Vehicles will be towed away on the spot upon the word of a police officer. If the car owner makes a request within 24 hours, Peoria will appoint a city employee to judge the case in a proceeding, "where the formal rules of evidence will not apply... and hearsay evidence shall be admissible," according to the ordinance. This hearing must take place within three days. If someone other than the owner was driving, the city can keep the car for 45 days before holding any hearing.
If the hearing officer finds it "probable" that the car made noise, the city will keep it until impounding fees, which add up on a daily basis, are paid. The city hopes to sell all vehicles that are not claimed within 30 days after a hearing.
A full copy of the ordinance is available in a 229k PDF file at the source link below.