Free breakfast proves expensive for some

February 4, 2009 10:08:39 AM PST
A trip out for a free breakfast at Denny's took a big bite out of the wallets of several people in Rosenberg on Tuesday. [SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

Some of those who went to the local Denny's Corp. restaurant for a free Grand Slam breakfast Tuesday morning came out to find their cars had been towed from their spots outside other business establishments. The bill to get their cars back cost $217.15, or the equivalent of about 70 of the $5.99 Grand Slam breakfasts.

"I was just here to pick up my mother-in-law in her wheelchair. All the handicapped parking spaces were full, so I parked here in a regular space," Dalia Molina, of Rosenberg, told The Fort Bend Herald outside Hollywood Video, which was closed at the time. "I was gone two minutes and when I came wheeling my mother-in-law out in her wheelchair, my truck was gone."

"They knew that Denny's was going to have this today. Why not have someone out here to tell us where the line is drawn -- where we can't park? I'm going to fight this. I want my money back. They charge $20 a day for storage fee, plus I had to pay for a cab."

Signs were posted in the various lots warning that vehicles could be towed. Denny's manager Inteshar Masud said he also placed a sign on the door of his restaurant warning that the cars could be towed if they parked in illegal spaces.

Jim Thomas, owner of J&H Towing and Recovery, said his company towed eight or 10 vehicles. Some were picked up after they received calls from managers and others were picked up as they patrolled the lots. He said his company specializes in working with private property owners.

Mayor Joe Gurecky said he was shocked to hear the news and contacted Police Chief Robert Gracia to look into the city's statutes about towing.

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