A parking control officer based out of Wausau, Wisconsin was on his route checking meters when he spotted one that was expired. As he was about to write the offender a ticket — he spotted a note tucked under the windshield wipers.
The officer, named Jim Hellrood, decided he’d inspect the note before writing up the citation. Hellrood was surprised by what the note said.
After unfolding the note, he saw the note “Please take pity on me. I walked home… safe choices.”
At the end of the note was a simple smiley face. He had never come across anything like this before and had to pause for a moment.
The officer was a bit taken aback by the fact that someone would purposely leave their car in a place where it could be ticketed; however, he appreciated the car owner’s honesty — and, of course, for not drinking and driving.
Instead of issuing a ticket (which was only $5), the kind officer decided to give the vehicle owner a warning.
“Pity Granted, Just A Warning,” the Wausau Police Department posted on Facebook Monday. “Parking Control Officer Jim Hellrood can appreciate people making safe choices, and a good sense of humor. That’s why he recently issued a warning to a vehicle left in a metered lot overnight.”
This officer was so kind and sympathetic. We need more people like him in the world!
The full post can be read below.
Another lieutenant, Cord Buckner, in the police department says that he had never seen such a thing before but he’s happy they made a smart decision.
“[This driver] realized it may not have been a safe choice and risked a citation rather than risk their own safety,” Buckner said. “We certainly applaud that decision to not drive.”
“Ultimately, parking enforcement officers generally take that attitude of trying to educate rather than being punitive,” Buckner said. “They aren’t just doing it haphazardly.”
It’s nice to hear that police officers aren’t handing out tickets just to be mean!
The Wausau Police Department has gotten a lot of praise from local residents after sharing the story on Facebook.
“We’re pleased people follow what we do and take an interest and understand the decision,” Buckner said. “But if you are planning on drinking avoid driving all together.”
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Please be safe and never drink and drive. Get yourself a designated driver, take a cab, or request an Uber. It will always be the smartest and safest choice.