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Opinion >  Column

The Slice: A crime spree that ended peacefully

I fought the law and, well, perhaps you are old enough to know how that song goes.

The law won.

This all happened late last week. It started with a predawn trip to the airport. And then, since I already had the car, I decided to simply drive straight to work instead of going home and then taking the bus downtown. My plan was to feed a parking meter a few times and make it a short day.

Since I arrived at the newspaper so early, I had my choice of parking spots next to the courtyard on Sprague.

Now here’s the part about my crime.

I know you are not supposed to camp in a parking space beyond the two-hour limit. I think that has been true for time immemorial. And I read just recently that the city is getting serious about enforcing the ban on feeding the meter.

Did I believe it? I did not.

OK, before you accuse me of being unaware of why feeding the meter is a problem or accuse me of being one of those who believes the rules do not apply to him, let me offer my rationalization.

I get it about how cars continually leaving (and freeing up) parking spaces is good for commerce. And in this specific instance, I would not want to be responsible for preventing someone from being able to park next to the newspaper and come in and purchase advertising space.

But my car was only going to be there for that one morning. And I fully intended to pour in the requisite number of quarters required to rent that prime streetside spot.

My overriding consideration, however, was the fact I totally dismissed the possibility that my meter-feeding would be detected. I was wrong.

Wrong to the tune of a $30 ticket.

Once, back in the 20th century, I went to court to fight a Spokane parking ticket. It was dismissed. But this time, they had me dead to rights.

My car had been noted as occupying the parking spot on Sprague at 9:09 a.m., and the ticket was issued at 11:49.

After briefly considering an “innocent by reason of insanity” defense, I decided to write a check and amend my ways.

So anyway, if you have wondered, “Do they ever ticket anyone for feeding the meter past the time limit?” let this be your answer.

Yes, they do.

Today’s Slice question: What happened when you challenged a parking ticket?

Write The Slice at P. O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email pault@spokesman.com. Do you say “please” when making a request of your computerized personal assistant?

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