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Notorious Lincoln Towing Strikes Again, Takes Car From Owner's Spot: Family

By Kelly Bauer | February 1, 2016 8:27am
 Aileen Manipol, of Irving Park, and her family said Lincoln Towing lied about where their car was parked so it could tow the car.
Aileen Manipol, of Irving Park, and her family said Lincoln Towing lied about where their car was parked so it could tow the car.
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DNAinfo/Kelly Bauer

IRVING PARK — A Chicago family says their car hasn't moved from its apartment building parking spot in four months — so they know Lincoln Towing improperly towed it and wrongly claimed it was somewhere else.

Aileen Manipol said her husband's car has been parked in its designated spot behind their apartment in the 4100 block of North California since September.

When it went missing on Friday, she and her daughter, Renielle Thalheimer, contacted police and were told the car had been taken by Lincoln Towing.

The towing company told Thalheimer that the car had been parked in a lot two buildings down, and it wasn't authorized to be there, she said.

But that's not true, Thalheimer said: Her father, who drives the car, has been in the Philippines since September, and he'd left the car in its usual spot. And their parking sticker is up to date. No one else drives the car or would have moved it, Thalheimer said.

In fact, the family said, the car has been parked in its designated spot for so long, it appears there on Google Earth:

The Manipols' car (red) has been in its designated parking spot for so long that it appears on Google Earth, the family said. Lincoln Towing told the family the car was parked two buildings down and wasn't authorized to be there when the company towed it Friday, the family said. [Google Earth]

The family's landlord said she's had tenants parking in the Manipols' spot for more than 20 years and has never had a car towed, and Lincoln Towing isn't authorized to take cars from the lot.

Lincoln Towing's claim that the car was parked two buildings down is a "lie," Thalheimer said: Her mother doesn't drive the car and wouldn't have parked it in the other lot, and she's not even sure the car would have started if someone tried to move it since it's been so long since her father was there to drive it.

The family intends to fight the towing company. They've refused to pay to have the car returned, are reaching out to Ald. Ameya Pawar (47th) and are considering a class-action lawsuit with other Lincoln Towing victims.

This isn't about the money, Thalheimer and her husband, Josh, said; it's about principle.

Paying "just invites them to do it more," Josh Thalheimer said.

Paying $200 and whatever fees have accumulated to get the car back wouldn't be a financial hardship, said Renielle Thalheimer, but it "is just wrong" that they should have to pay when Lincoln Towing is lying about where the car was parked.

Aileen Manipol said her husband had been parked in their designated parking spot since September when Lincoln Towing on Friday took the car and claimed the car had been parked in another lot. [DNAinfo/Kelly Bauer]

Pawar did not immediately respond to requests for comment, but the alderman has condemned the towing company in the past.

"When I first took office, we had an issue with them towing from lots they didn't have a right to tow from," Pawar said in November. "As alderman, it's my duty to promote business, but this is one business that doesn't deserve representation.

"They're bad actors; they're just an outrageous operator, and I'm looking at every option available in order to strike back."

Lincoln Towing did not immediately respond to requests for comment


• After Fight At Lincoln Towing, Alderman Wants 'Outrageous' Company Gone

• Lincoln Towing Driver Knocks Man Off 16-Foot Ladder To Take Truck: Charges

Lincoln Towing in Hot Water For Unauthorized Towing

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