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Tow Trouble

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NORTH LITTLE ROCK -

When parking is a premium at a business or apartment complex, a towing company often has free reign to get rid of vehicles that don't belong.

Such is the case at one North Little Rock strip mall…and not everyone is happy about it.

One Sherwood woman believes a towing company hired to patrol a North Little Rock strip mall's parking lot is being overly aggressive.

On Thursday morning Cara Huntsman visited name brand second hand 20 minutes before the store was to open.

"I walked to Farmer's to stall for time and to see if I could get an insurance quote," says Huntsman.   "Planning on walking back to the "Name Brand, Second Hand" after they opened at 10:00."

She came out to find her car about to be towed by J-Hook Towing.  

The large parking lot was nearly empty, but there are signs stating that parking is only for customers of Somer's Plaza.  Farmers is next to…but not a part of…Somer's Plaza.

"The driver said well you weren't standing at the door and you weren't in your car," says Huntsman.  "I said I walked over here for ten minutes waiting on them to open. And he sorry…$150.00 to get it down."

General Properties, which manages Somer's Plaza, allows J-Hook to tow vehicles belonging to people not visiting one of the mall's four tenants…even on days when most of those businesses are closed.

People visiting a plasma donation center next door are the primary offenders.

"I understand the conflict," says Huntsman.  "I understand the problem. But there are people…as of me…who have no knowledge of this parking war as it's called."

J-Hook says it is providing the strip mall a service and is doing nothing wrong or illegal.

However, General Properties has agreed to refund Ms. Huntsman the $150.00 she paid to keep her car from being towed.

Air date:  November 30th, 2012