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Police Case Lost Cannot Impond Golf Carts

Judge rules in Police Case about impound lot case-Ottawa County Pleas Court Judge Bruce Winters recently handed down a ruling on a police case involving the impounding of two golf carts belonging to Tim Niese by the Put-in-Bay Police Department. One of Tim’s Put-in-Bay Golf Carts was pulled over by police on East Point a couple of seasons ago. The occupants were told by the police they shouldn’t be driving and then impounded the cart when the renters left it.

The other was a utility cart from one of Niese’s hotels that ended up abandoned out on Put-in-Bay Rd. in late winter last year. It was also impounded. In both cases, when the owner went to get the carts from the impound lot, a storage fee was required by the Village for their release.

The owner refused to pay for what seemed to be impounds caused by 1) a third party who rented a cart and 2) a cart that he claimed to be stolen and then abandoned. Since both matters seemed to be not of the owner’s making, the case was brought to trial with the owner wanting his carts and the Village wanting its impound fees. The police case seemed to drag on for some time, and the carts sat unprotected from the weather in the Village’s impound lot for some months.

Since the judge found in favor of the plaintiff, a hearing has been set for later in May to award what damages may be forthcoming. These
could be for the physical deterioration of the golf carts while in storage and also the loss of rental revenue from the Put-in-Bay rental cart.


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