Judge Rules Bay Area Homeless Man Can Get His Car Back

A Bay Area man says he shouldn't have his car towed and sold simply because he can't afford to pay parking tickets. And this week, a judge agreed and ordered San Francisco to give him his car back.

Now, many are asking if the decision could spark a wave of new problems.

Sean Kayode's lawyer says seizing a homeless person's car because they can't pay for the parking tickets violates the 4th Amendment, protecting against unreasonable search and seizure.

"I got a car to better my life," Kayode said. "I've been homeless for a long time."

Kayode racked up 30 parking citations and more than $11,000 in fines as he tried to make ends meet delivering food. His attorneys argue he cannot reasonably pay the fees. Many others said they are in the same boat.

"We pursued this case because we heard time and time again that people were losing their property, their only asset, their vehicles, for unpaid parking tickets," said Jude Pond, a staff attorney with the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights San Francisco. "For homeless people, and for poor people in San Francisco, this is a huge loss."

NBC Bay Area's Sam Brock has more in the video report above.

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