Cars towed after Chene Park employees told to use parking lot

A Chene Park employee says she was parking where a security guard told her to on Saturday.

At the end of her workday, her car and many others, was towed with impound charges looming.

Rickesha Donaldson was excited to start work as a bartender for the concert season. 

"I just thought it would be a good environment to work in, see concerts," she said. "On the waterfront. I always wanted to work there.

"There was a guy at the front with a check sheet (who said) 'I think they're having you guys park over there because the gate is closed,'" she said. "I finally parked and didn't clock in until 6:02 - it took me that long to look for a parking spot."

So Rickesha parked in a lot where the guard told her and when she finished her shift, her car was gone and the lot locked. Her car and several others had been towed.

"I don't know how Chene Park works, but I just know I parked where I was told to park and reported to work," Donaldson said. "I don't have any family and was wondering how I was going to get home."

Her 2002 Ford Taurus  was taken to Troy's Towing and Rickesha can't afford to get it out.

 "It was $230 as of Saturday and a $75 charge to get my purse, to get my ID to prove the car is mine," Donaldson said. "And it's going up $15 per day."

Shahida Mausi is the CEO of The Right Productions.

FOX 2:  "This woman claims your lot was locked and that the security guard told her to park on the street."

"My lot was not locked and available and open for parking for customers and anyone else who chose to park there," she said.

The Right Productions operates Chene Park. Mausi says employees and customers are supposed to pay to park in this 1,200 hundred car lot.

Ultimately it's up to the individual to make sure they are parking in a legal, lighted location. Regardless she says they are working to help their employees get their cars back.

"We feel badly for anyone whose car was towed," Mausi said. "Certainly if it was an employee because we value our employees and we do our best to treat them well."

Rickesha claims all she has gotten is the runaround from Detroit police, Chene Park and Troy's Towing, which told her she has to pay $75 to even get her purse out of her car - on top of all of the growing fees.

Rickesha couldn't even return to work right now if she wanted to.

"I usually stay away from downtown because of stuff like this," she said. "I thought because I was an employee, I would be protected. But they still don't give a damn."

Mausi said she has tried to put in phone calls and deal with the situation.

As for Rickesha, she says if she knew that one paid lot was her only option, she would have paid then, rather than deal with this.
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