Criminal charges filed in Louisiana ambulance booting

Criminal charges filed in Louisiana ambulance booting

NEW ORLEANS (WWL/CNN) - The fallout continues for a convenience store that placed a boot on a working ambulance while EMT's with New Orleans EMS were inside trying to save a man's life.

The man who booted the ambulance was a Quicky's convenience store employee and New Orleans Police cited him for simple criminal damage to property for putting the boot on the ambulance.

Eyewitness News saw workers continuing to boot cars in their parking lot Monday morning. A worker at Quicky's convenience store said the employee, identified in a police report as Ahmed Sidi Aleywa, who booted a working ambulance Friday has been fired.

"The guy that did this, he came from another country. He didn't even know what an ambulance looked like. He's been fired," said Ali Colone, a man identified as a worker at Quicky's. The owners declined to comment, but Colone said the owners are sorry it happened.

"We just have rules and regulations that we have to follow by. There are signs out here for our regular customers," Colone said.

Those rules and regulations are self-imposed. Quicky's parking lot is private property. Signs posted read, "If you leave the property your vehicle will be booted."

Akesha Allen is a private investigator and in September, she stopped to get a drink at Quicky's. Before getting out, she climbed to the back of the van to secure her equipment when it started shaking.

"I said, what are you doing? I'm not illegally parked. He goes, yes you are. You didn't pay the fee. I said I never got out of the van to pay the fee," Allen said about a $5 charge for parking in the lot.

They gave her a sheet that said she owed them $120 to remove the boot.

"We had to come out there with cash. They wouldn't take a check," said Mark Avery, Allen's employer at Deep South Investigations.

The sheet said it was booted by a company called "Bootman, Inc." But they're a subsidiary of Premier Parking Enforcement in Atlanta, and the owner sidekick's booting operation is not, and never has been, affiliated with them.

"It doesn't pass the sniff test, does it?" asked Avery.

Quicky's parking lot is private property. The city Code says private companies are allowed to boot, but they must be licensed with the city, they can only charge a maximum of $90 to remove the boot. Quicky's signs say they're charging at least $115.

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