Tampa Police say hands are tied to reduce noise complaints

09/01/11 Janelle Irwin
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The City of Tampa has been trying to figure what to do about excessive noise complaints for a long time. At this morning’s City Council meeting, Tampa Police Assistant Police chief Marc Hamlin told council members that pulling drivers over for noise violations would be unconstitutional. Council member Frank Reddick laughed at the inability of officers to pursue offenders.

But the agency’s hands aren’t completely tied. They told city council the use of so-called soft letters is underway. That’s when residents provide information to police about noise violations by motorists. If enough information is available, a letter is sent to the vehicle’s owner explaining they may be guilty of a misdemeanor. Council members voted to evaluate the soft letter process again in about six months.

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