Woman's brother dies, tow yard charges her $700 to return his truck

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A woman has been trying to get her deceased brother's towed car back for weeks, but the tow yard wants her to pay hundreds of dollars for it. 

On March 16, Joanne Ballinger's brother Grady died from a drug overdose. Detroit police were called to the scene as a matter of protocol and Grady's pick-up truck was towed as part of the death investigation.

About a week later, Joanne talked to the officer on the case about the truck. 

"He told me he did release it and it shouldn't be any problem and I could get it," she said. "When I called the tow yard they told me no, that I had to pay $700 to get it out."

Joanne made more phone calls and was told by the tow yard that the proper information needed to be inputted into the system by the police department for her to get the truck out of the police impound lot without paying anything. But then she says the police told her the tow supervisor had to enter in the information.

"When I spoke to that tow supervisor he said no, that he couldn't do anything," she said. "I would have to go back to the officer that had the truck impounded. It was back and forth, back and forth."

After weeks of this back and forth, Joanne called FOX 2.

"Nobody wants to help me," she said.

Grady's family was hoping to get the truck back in a timely matter so they could sell it and use the money to help pay for his funeral.

"Why is that such a big deal? I don't know," she said.

FOX 2 contact the Detroit police which says it is looking into the matter. The tow yard said to call back tomorrow during business hours.

UPDATE: The fee was waived for Joanne Wednesday and she was able to get her brother's truck back.