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Durham Police Investigate Parking Enforcement Unit

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DURHAM, N.C. — Durham police are investigating criminal activity in one of their own departments.

Durham police detectives are investigating their parking enforcement unit. They are looking into a possible misappropriation of funds. Supervisor Chuckie Pettiford resigned on Thursday. He had been with the division since March 1998.

Pettiford is the latest in a string of employees to leave City Hall because of questionable finances.

Last year, three top administrators were forced out after problems were found with the small business loan program. The city was left with more than $800,000 in uncollected loans.

While officers are still issuing tickets and collecting money, the offices for the parking enforcement unit are closed.

"Clearly, the small business loan was an aberration in the way we operate and it's something we're going to have to work on," Conner said.

Since then, the city has been reviewing its procedures. Conner said this latest incident will require the same kinds of check and balances.

"I've asked our internal auditor to look at our procedure of how money is actually collected and forwarded," she said.

The parking enforcement unit has had its share of problems. Over a year ago, the company was under scrutiny for having more than $1 million in unpaid parking tickets and the city had to hire a collection agency to get the money.

Despite being part of the Durham Police Department, the seven-man parking enforcement unit is not composed of sworn officers. Investigators said that they are just starting their investigation. No charges have been filed.

Parking tickets can be paid at the cashier's office on the first floor of CityHall. Ticket appeals and questions should be directed to

(919) 560-4411