The Better Business Bureau is warning Metro Detroit about Breakthrough Towing Company after receiving 29 complaints from people at two businesses.
People are having their cars towed from parking lots at Mc Donald's and Midtown Liquor in the 4100 and 4200 block of Woodward Avenue.
A lawsuit has also been filed against the company calling its practices “predatory.”
It is attached below:
Detroit Police Lt. Michael Parish says they have little authority to stop this with state laws or Detroit ordinances, “We’ve received a number of complaints that have ranged from Breakthrough having a relationship with the business owner, actually feeding the business owner money, in exchange for tows.”
Rich Kulka has his truck towed and says, “I think it’s the biggest scam in Detroit.”
A couple of weeks ago he parked at the Mc Donald's and went inside.
He says people have no time to breathe, “I came out of the bathroom, I wanted to get food. The line was long. I went across the street for a minute. The tow truck driver was already there, dragging my truck up onto the bed.”
State law requires a towing company to not leave with a car if the owner is there.
They can charge a service fee.
Towing companies also have to call the police to make sure the car they are towing is not reported stolen.
But Detroit Police have no authority to stop this.
“Right now, it’s very hard. It’s tricky. It’s difficult. What would be best in the eyes of the police department would be for local or state lawmakers to provide an enforcement mechanism,” Lt. Parish says.
We went to Breakthrough Towing, and nobody answered.
People have to pay $400 cash only to get their car back.
They drove Rich Kulka to get the cash with his truck still in tow.
He says, “Two trips to the ATM. My truck on the flatbed, correct.”
It is not the first time this has happened in Detroit. A Deputy Police Chief and a towing company owner were busted by the feds for bribery.
The Lieutenant says towing companies make a lot of money and lobby politicians to keep the heat off.