August 18, 2012
Alycia Ann Taylor
2111 McDonald’s Dr.
Oak Brook, IL 60523
801 Allegheny Ave,
Pittsburgh, PA 15233, USA
Charmene Hunter –Lewis 2nd Assistant Manager
412.322 – 6660
Regarding case of customer car illegally being towed.
Dear Managers, Owners, Customers Service Persons or Legal Department
I am writing to tell you about my horrible experience I had while visiting your restaurant and demanding a re-imbursement of my cash paid as a result of the actions and inactions of McDonald’s Inc. Charmene Hunter –Lewis 2nd Assistant Manager who
has conspired with Howard’s Towing and Recovery of Pittsburgh causing intentional infliction of emotional distress by a unjustifiable unlawful unethical plot to become unjustly enriched the unjust enrichment came to private person running a parking scheme which traps unwary consumers. The demand I seek is an apology and cash re-imbursement and 3,000.00 for pain and suffering for placing an undue burden of stress on me which subsequently ruined my visit to Pittsburgh and did cause severe emotional distress and extreme anxiety.
On Sunday October 7 ,2012 as a paying customer( See attached receipt), while sitting in the dining area of McDonald’s Inc. located on 801 Allegheny Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15233, USA and after purchasing a cup of coffee and hash brown for breakfast of which I have the receipts from the restaurant which prove that I was a customer at the time the tow occurred and as such established that fact it was an illegal tow. While sitting in dinging area a verbal altercation took place between the two employees, behind the counter the manager attempted to settle these employees down but the conflict escalated to the point of complete chaos of the interior front and dining area, quite frankly I was afraid. What happened next was shockingly disturburbing the manager seemed panic I became startled and worried so I approached the manager and questioned her because I saw her frantically going out the door so when she re- entered the restaurant, I asked her was everything all right because I’m not certain about my safety at this location anymore and became worried about my car and everything. She looked puzzled asked what kind of car was I driving? I told her the car with the Ohio plate a Chrysler 2012, 200 she said your car is towed, check with the man outside. When I went outside she started to admit she was wrong and said I didn’t know you were in here. The guy blamed the manager, then the manager blamed the guy, then they said I in effort to cover up their obvious mistake, they both claimed the car was parked in parking lot pass the 30 minute time limit. The vehicle was towed at the request of the owner of the property and they had to sign an authorization form with the vehicle description. Nobody just takes cars without a request to do so.That why the manager went outside to authorize the tow. Somebody is not being truthful here. That expectation of a customer to get in a restaurant and out its dining area in 30 minutes is preposterous , insensitive to needs of a consumer and unethical business practice and is nothing more than a trap set for the unwary does more harm to innocent consumers that violators, the rule is enforced arbitrary some cars park longer than mine remained , the parking lot is encourages abuses they are using the customer parking lot on game day for person gain, private tow business is flourishing signs are purposely small cant be see as the unwary driver pull on lot unaware his car could be taken in 30 minutes , laws of most cites require business to have ample space for its customers . Does the city know That Mc Donald’s Inc. operates a parking lot for profit, price gouging consumers taking people person property and commandeering it withhold people’s property violating city state and federal civil tort law, by a crime of conversion charging a whopping $180.00 cash fee to get my car from a private owners lot 20 minutes away (See attached receipt). Let me first say it took 5-7mins for my order then then young clerk Terrence got me on the Wi-Fi that took ten min at the counter that this same manager questioned him at the counter on the register and wanted to know what he was doing and stood there and watched.
My car was towed away for McDonald’s Corporation Parking lot while inside the restaurant chain eating and drinking a cup of coffee and enjoying the use of Wi-Fi that was available…without any previous warning .Wasn’t McDonalds staff supposed to take down registration numbers? But they did not. Shouldn’t Warnings Be Inside the Restaurant?
However, this is certainly not a normal policy. No other restaurant chain that I am aware of in my home state Ohio does this were customers cars get towed for staying too long. And as every person knows, when visiting such a place you really do not have time to start reading the small print on the signs in McDonalds ’parking lots You are more interested in getting safely into the restaurant most times rushing to get ahead of other customers in line.
McDonalds should really have large banners inside the restaurant “reminding” its customers that they have strict time limits on how long you may die for. They should stop towing cars altogether without a complete understanding of the facts with documentation and proof they check all customers inside before initiating a authorization to tow someone’s person property, a harsh sanction for paying customer. The business should err on the side of caution to consumer
It turns out that I am not the first to raise this though. McDonalds actually appeared on Watchdog for this same reason in April 2010 – Big charges with your Big Mac.
I was completely shocked when the manager told me my car had been towed for staying in the parking lot for over 30 minutes; prior to the tow I receive no warning. After I ask manger why my car was towed? She said they have a policy that cars left in parking lot unattended get towed, after 30 minutes. the temperature outside was cold my jacket was in my car, no one from management would help, they would not even provide a ride to retrieve the vehicle after explaining to them I was from Ohio they would not even call a cab for me .The location of the towing business where car was taken was twenty minutes away my laptop was carried without protection in the rain my books were heavy and had to be carried 1 mile uncovered in rain and cold the books were difficult to manage walking to rivers Casino to try to get a cab.
First and foremost I have never heard of such harsh policy at any McDonald’s Corporation in the entire United States I was a paying customer (receipt included) it is unreasonable to expect a paying customer at McDonald to know of such policy and had I been informed of a possible tow of my car , I would never had parked in the lot ,never visited , and never used the Wi-Fi or dine inside, there has been more than one occasion where I have waited in line over 15minutes just waiting to get an order at counter. The so called policy is ambiguous , it does not make sense invites corruption, snags innocent customers into its nets with violators , tickets should be placed on vehicles of people dinning in , a pager could be given to customer to alert them of such drastic lethal blow of injustice
McDonald’s Inc. was running a under the table unlawful parking lot, a side parking lot operation using the spaces for paid profit that are normally for reserved customers the location is so embroiled with selling parking it encourages wrong doing and greed at the expense of its customer having a good experience, the entire operation is designed to make money the McDonalds Corporation charge a paying customer 180.00 cash by the use of conversion I believe its unlawful taking of ones property without warning the cost of the tow was double the amount the city charges to tow cars. Why does McDonald Inc. Operate a parking facility inside its customer parking lot. Is McDonald’s Inc. in the parking business? I have never seen such greed, I just can’t believe this, why not place a ticket booth in front and charge by the hour, how about take 5seconds and have cash register issue a written printed warning you must eat in 30minutes.if you’re driving. It unfairly punishes people driving to the location, where is the equal protection of constitution rights to visit a public facility free of harassment there is corporate liability here.
To add insult to injury I called the local owners office and left all information pertaining to this incident and have not received any response.
We demand a fair and reasonable settlement to be paid in two weeks from the receipt of this letter. Which totals 3,200.00 dollars or we will seek other available remedies in this matter. For this was one of the most egregious acts I have ever suffered in public at a private company with such a pristine record of customer service this Corporation is the standard of the business world both Domestically and Globally don’t let this location ruin your reputation. Something is wrong at this location. Perhaps it’s an ethics embargo. You see guys I buy a cup of coffee daily back home here in Twinsburg, Ohio from you guys. I love McDonald’s.
Alycia Ann Taylor
CC. Charmene Hunter –Lewis 2nd Assistant Manager