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Towed Car Earns Columbus Department of Safety a $500 Billion Lawsuit

Authorised Removal Unit Removes Illegally Parked Car tow truck
Scott Barbour, Getty

An Ohio woman took the phrase “frivolous lawsuit” to a new level with her lawsuit over her towed car.

Michelle R. Mathis of Columbus, Ohio asked for $500 billion in damages from the city after they impounded her 2002 Saturn SC2.

She claimed in her lawsuit that her car was towed as she was being treated at a university medical hospital for a medical procedure. She had been in a car accident and required some recovery time. She said she was unable to receive any mail during this recovery time, including any notification from the city’s Department of Public Safety that they had taken possession of her car. She claimed that the city never even sent her a notification.

Then after she was released from the hospital, she said she tried to recover her car but learned that the impound lot had sold it. So she filed the lawsuit seeking damages. Her lawsuit was filed in a handwritten document. She also claimed the city “holds a grudge against her.”

The lawsuit ruled against Mathis on the grounds that the city had not violated any constitutional laws by refusing to return her car and found no malfeasance to merit a $500 billion damage claim. The judge also dismissed the lawsuit.


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