Chiropractor's wife!

Chiropractor's wife!
Have Curves In All The Right Places?

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Valentines Day 2006 Parking Ticket

We were a proud one car family. We had been going on 5 years of this. I was a stay at home mom only working 3 shifts or so a month at the local hospital as a unit secretary so I rarely required wheels while my husband was at school. Once in a while I would need to take the car which meant being a taxi for my husband to and from school.

Logan College of Chiropractic as it was called then was a beautiful campus. It was always a pleasure to take him and pick him up. The major options to load and unload where an elaborate turn around driveway was in front of the main administrative building sprinkled with NO PARKING signs every 10 feet, or on the side of campus on the fringe of a student parking lot. It was difficult to time things right and neither of us had cell phones back then so naturally I was more comfortable sitting in a parked car out of the way on the side of the school rather than the front!

Here it was, Valentines day 2006. I was as big as a house expecting a April baby! I'm minding my own business for 5 minutes when the school security truck pulls up behind me and my son. Granted my engine was off, but I was trying to preserve gas and I was IN THE CAR! He sat behind me and I didn't get it. Then he gets out of his car and starts writing on a mini clip board a number from off of my front windshield. Concerned, I asked what he was doing. He said, "What do you mean what am I doing, you 're getting a ticket." I asked why and he said I was parked illegally in a no parking zone. Okay, there are no signs, no yellow curb, no red curb....just grey sidewalk concrete and me out of the way on the side of the parking lot closest to the door. He asked me my husbands name and wrote it on the paper last and handed it to me. I snatched it disrespectfully out of his hands and threw it on my passenger seat floor. He got in his car and was out of sight as people started flowing out of the building, as if on cue.

I was devastated! The ticket was made out to my husband, when it was me who operated the car and it was made out for a violation that didn't exist! My husband handed me a carnation that he purchased from the cafeteria and wished me happy Valentines day but I could only see red even though it was probably pink or white! He told me we'd dispute it an I ran it by the student body president who had happened to pass by conveniently. I knew one thing, we weren't paying! Plus, I had a OB appointment I was running late for that day!

My husband and several people took the matter as eye witnesses to where I had remained parked clear up to getting the ticket to the dean of student services on campus. I wasn't there but it was in my husbands name and jeopardized letting him have grades or graduate if it went on his record there as unpaid. The woman refused the eyewitnesses and it seemed hopeless.

I took matters in to my own hands. I was a zealot who abhorred injustice. I took it upon myself to look up and print out and highlight the City of Chesterfields parking, no parking, and such policy. It clearly stated a no parking zone must be clearly marked. I wrote them a letter and sent it along with pictures of the site they claim was no parking and waited.

I got a letter back saying more or less that they would drop the matter and unfreeze my husbands grades but proceeded to rebuke me about not tolerating mistreatment of their security guards and that if I were to ever behave that way to any Logan employee my husband would have academic consequences.

I picked up the phone and called that woman before I ever finished the letter. She answered right away, so I just began, "This is Sophia Shepherd and I just want you to know that I got your letter and find myself reading it thinking you have me confused with someone else!" She said, "Mrs Shepherd, we had a meeting about this and asked our officer and he told us all about you making racial remarks and acting belligerent towards him." I could not believe my ears! I relayed my entire side of the story and admitted that the worst I did was snap the ticket from his fingers disrespectfully but that it was not in my nature to be this pregnant and confrontational. I had asked what he was doing, told him my husbands name when asked, and then snatched it out of his fingers. He gave me no warning to move, it was not a no parking zone yet he wrote it out to me. To find out he lied to his employers and the automatically believed him was frightening. Were we dealing with a racially charged school concerned about money and exploitation? Or were we dealing with a respectable institution that I was lead to believe was worth the 30K a year in tuition and fees alone!?

A bad feeling told me this school wasn't quite what it was cracked up to be!! We had 2 years left too!!! If I had known better I would have begged my husband to look into this choice further and get the heck out! You are so isolated and in a bubble when you are in school full time like that so we were well protected! This experience jarred that bubble just enough as if the universe were trying to wake us up and look long and hard at this place called Logan College of Chiropractic. Regrets...me and Frank Sinatra have a few.

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