9-92-035  Authority to impound fleeing vehicle.
   (a)   A motor vehicle involved in an unlawful attempt to flee or elude police officers shall be subject to impoundment under the procedures of this section.
   (b)   A police officer shall, if possible, record the vehicle make and color, and the issuing state and number of the license plate of a vehicle that the officer has attempted to stop through use of the emergency signal equipment on the officer's vehicle. If the operator of the other vehicle fails or refuses to stop, and if the police officer forgoes or abandons pursuit of the other vehicle for reasons of public safety, the officer shall report the recorded information as directed by the superintendent, for delivery to appropriate sections of the police department and the department of streets and sanitation responsible for impoundment and towing of vehicles.
   (c)   The police officer's report shall also include: the date, approximate time and approximate location of the attempted stop; the reason for the attempted stop; the emergency signal equipment activated by the police officer; the public safety considerations that caused the police officer to forego or abandon pursuit of the described vehicle.
   (d)   The Department of Police shall send a notice of intent to impound the vehicle described in the police officer's report to the owner of record of the vehicle. The notice shall be sent either by first class mail or by messenger to the address of the owner of record as indicated in state registration records. The notice shall include the following: a statement that the operator of the vehicle failed or refused to stop when ordered to do so by a Chicago police officer; the date, approximate time and approximate location of the event, the description of the vehicle as contained in the officer's report; and notice of an opportunity to contest eligibility for impoundment. A copy of the notice shall be forwarded to the department of administrative hearings. A notice is presumed delivered upon being deposited with the United States Postal Service with proper postage affixed.
   (e)   An owner of record who receives a notice pursuant to subsection (d) of this section may contest eligibility for impoundment by written request delivered to the department of administrative hearings, postmarked within 14 days after the delivery of the notice. The department of administrative hearings shall set a date for a hearing on the eligibility of the vehicle for impoundment, and shall notify the owner of the date, time and place of the hearing. The hearing date must be no more than 30 days after a request for a hearing has been filed. At the hearing the police officer's report shall be considered prima facie correct. In order to disprove the vehicle's eligibility for impoundment, the owner of record must prove that (1) at the time and date of the attempted stop as described in the police officer's report, the described vehicle was not operated within the City of Chicago; or (2) at the time and date of the attempted stop, the vehicle had been reported stolen; (3) the license information described in the report does not match the listed make of the described vehicle. If the owner of record prevails, the notice of intent to impound the owner's vehicle shall be withdrawn and the vehicle shall not be eligible for impoundment under this section.
   (f)   If a vehicle owner receives a notice pursuant to subsection (d) of this section and (1) fails to contest eligibility under subsection (e) of this section or (2) does not prevail in the contest of eligibility, the vehicle described in the notice shall be eligible for impoundment if found on the public way within 12 months following the conclusion of the contest, if a contest was requested, or following the last date to request a contest, if none was requested. Provided, however, if the owner of the vehicle that is eligible for impoundment under this subsection pays the administrative penalty provided in subsection (g) any time before such vehicle is impounded, the vehicle shall not be eligible for impoundment.
   (g)   The owner of a vehicle eligible for impoundment under this section shall be subject to an administrative penalty of $2,000. If such vehicle is impounded, the owner of the vehicle shall be subject to the administrative penalty plus the applicable cost of towing and storage of the vehicle under Section 9-92-080.
(Added Coun. J. 3-15-00, p. 27700, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 12-15-04, p. 39840, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 11-16-11, p. 14596, Art. I, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 7-22-20, p. 18957, § 6)