SAN JOSE (KCBS) – San Jose Police Monday sought to clarify proposed changes to the policy on impounding vehicles, with the message being: unlicensed drivers aren’t off the hook.

KCBS’ Matt Bigler Reports:

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Under the proposed new policy, which still required formal approval from the City Attorney, the San Jose Police Department declared that it would no longer impound cars for a month when an unlicensed driver is stopped for a minor traffic infraction.

If an unlicensed driver is pulled over for a minor vehicle infraction in San Jose, they could phone a friend to pick up their car – if they have a clean driving record.

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“An individual continually shows a record of being in violation of different traffic laws that are deemed hazardous and it shows on their record that they’ve been cited for those violations, they’re not eligible for this new policy,” clarified San Jose Police Department spokesperson, Jose Garcia.

The old policy required that vehicles be impounded for up to 30 days, followed by a hefty fine. But Garcia said they are changing the rules in tough budget times – to keep the limited number of officers they have on patrol.

“And so we’re not going to stay there to monitor them until somebody arrives. We’re going to go back in service and so if that driver decides to get back in the car and drive away, they are still held liable.”

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