UPDATED: Corporal Amy Miguez, spokesperson for the Annapolis Police Department called us to explain that this initiative was not new and to reinforce that it is a law in Maryland. Miguez said that 7 vehicles were spotted today. Five received citations, 2 did not because they were locked and had remote starters. “In fact, there was a vehicle stolen just this morning that was left unlocked and running,” said Miguez. “If an officer is able to get to a vehicle, determine it is unlocked and running; and begin to write a ticket, there is certainly enough time for someone to steal it.”
An Annapolis resident contacted us this morning to let us know that the Annapolis Police Department was ticketing vehicles in residential neighborhoods which were spotted running without a driver.
With temperatures in the single digits, most drivers will allow their vehicles to warm up, prior to driving. This morning, one local resident of A community off Forest Drive allowed her car to warm up while she watched from inside her townhome. She received a $70 citation for “leaving the car unattended without stopping the engine, locking ignition removing key and setting brake.”
Below is the appropriate Maryland Code:
2010 Maryland Code
TITLE 21 – VEHICLE LAWS – RULES OF THE ROAD
Subtitle 11 – Miscellaneous Rules
Section 21-1101 – Unattended motor vehicle.
§ 21-1101. Unattended motor vehicle.
(a) Duty of driver upon leaving unattended vehicle.- Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, a person driving or otherwise in charge of a motor vehicle may not leave it unattended until the engine is stopped, the ignition locked, the key removed, and the brake effectively set.
(b) Procedure for vehicles on grades.- A person driving or otherwise in charge of a motor vehicle may not leave the motor vehicle unattended until, if the vehicle is on a grade, the front wheels are turned to the curb or side of the highway.
(c) Animals left in vehicles.- When a cat or dog is left in the unattended vehicle of an on-duty law enforcement officer or an animal control officer, the provisions of subsection (a) of this section do not apply to the law enforcement officer or the animal control officer.
Annapolis does have a problem with goods being stolen from vehicles as well as vehicles being stolen in general.
We have reached out to the Annapolis Police Department for a comment and are awaiting a return call.