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TROUBLESHOOTERS: Woman's car towed from her own apartment complex

READ MORE: TROUBLESHOOTERS: Woman Towed from her Own Apartment Complex

In this weeks Troubleshooters report, a Wilmington woman whose car was towed from her apartment complex. Police initially thought the car had been stolen, but two weeks after it went missing, investigators realized it had actually been towed.

Not having a car has turned Trinita Hampton's world upside down. "I've missed work, I had to inform my job that I didn't have any reliable way to get back and forth to work. Two boys to raise, so it's been an inconvenience.”

Her car disappeared May 15th, and she immediately called Wilmington Police. They checked to make sure the car hadn't been towed, and when they didn't see it on their tow list, police reported it stolen. “On the 27th, that's when I got a call from the Wilmington Police Department, saying my car had actually been towed by Rosaks," Hampton explained.

By that point, the car had been in storage for almost two weeks, and the bill to get it back was $400. Hampton couldn't afford it, and couldn't understand why it had been towed in the first place, since it was parked right outside of her apartment. Turns out, the tag on her car was expired, and the lease at Greentree Apartments gave Rosak's towing the OK to tow any vehicle with improper tags.

Wilmington Police Inspector Eltaruas Bluford says it's not unusual for apartment complexes to have a policy like that. "They don't want to create a situation where they have abandoned vehicles, a vehicle that sits for a long period of time, tires deflated, you know, most apartment complexes want to keep their appearances up,” he said.

Rosaks towing owner, Robert Rosak, says his crews put stickers on cars before they're towed, to give the owner a chance to move it or fix the issue in question. "If you have flat tires or your tags don't match, or they are expired, please move the vehicle when we put a sticker on it, or call the office and let them know your financial situation,” Rosak advised. “If you can't get the money to go ahead and get the tags on the car - or get the car repaired or whatever, they'll work with you, if you'll at least call the office and let them know.”

Hampton says she never saw the sticker, and it appears a mix-up with the VIN number is why her car didn't show up on the WPD's tow list. Because of the mix-up, and the police department's delay notifying Hampton that her car had been towed, not stolen, Rosak’s has agreed to cut her a break. Thanks to the discounted price, Hampton should be able to get her car back later this week.

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rosacks are thieves and vigilantes

They just stole my sisters car from outside our sisters apartment. She had been there all of 10 minutes. Now her purse and everything is in the car. Including the keys were still in the ignition. They are thieves and should be charged with larceny of a vehicle. How is a single mother of 3 kids supposed too be able to afford getting her car back when it should of never of been touched in the first place...

predatory towing

Fossil is a crook. By state, county and city rules he jaws 24 hrs to notify owner. He also has to notify the 911 Call center before he rose the car. I know this because I drive a tow truck. Don't let him fool you, he is a thief.

What if your sticker was

What if your sticker was expired but your registration is valid? You just lost your sticker or someone peeled it off.

Wrong enforcers

It shouldn't be the job of an apartment complex or a greedy tow truck driver to enforce laws. That's what State Troopers, Sheriff Deputies and Police officers are paid to do. These apartment complexes have found a little loop hole to make the towing companies money and, in turn get kickbacks I would imagine.


As long as a car is parked on private property, law enforcement can't do a thing about an expired plate. It's not operating on the public right-of-way, is it? As long as it's parked on private property, no law is being broken.

Apartment complexes, however, do have a right to make sure their parking lots are not cluttered up with discarded or inoperable vehicles.

So the tow-truck driver isn't enforcing any part of NCGS Chapter 20 at all. He's simply enforcing the apartment complex's rules.


It is unfortunate that she allowed her tags to go out, but that is the way of the world. If you let your tags go there are consequences. I understand when financial times are tough its hard to get stuff done, but I'm willing to bet she could have saved up the money to get it done. I think she's lucky that the apartments and the towing company are willing to work with her.

how many times have you just

how many times have you just forgot to get your car inspected[it use to be right in front of you]or been going down the street and 'say i better get gas NOW' if you say never i say liar.i think wilmington has had trouble with this company before.i can see if it looked abandoned but expired tag come on.i glad i leave in the country and don't have to put up with all this b.s.

glad i don't

glad i don't have to worry about that towing bs anymore since my friend got a real place to stay.

seriously they barely allow room for residents to park much less company.

Her Fault

Get your tags up to date and make sure you read your lease agreement! Everytime Ive lived in an apartment in Wilmington, Ive either read or have been told if my tags expire or if I dont have a tag on my car, it gets towed at my expense. This was her laziness. I work for a repossession company and I see it all the time with people. They get upset because they didnt pay something on time and end up getting repo'd or fined. Then they go crying about how they were done wrong. Funny, i pay my bills on time, and I dont seem to ever have a problem like this. Imagine that.


I guess you have never had trouble making ends meet, huh? To not be able to buy adequate food or to make your bills, even though you're working like a slave, huh? I myself am struggling to some up with all these fees and having to choose between rent and keeping my car on the road, and I WORK. I guess you have never been treated like a third-class citizen by doctors' offices because you cannot afford health insurance or to pay them, so therefore, you don't have the right to even be seen for an illness, right?

It's your disdain for the working poor that is feeding into the gluttony of our power-hungry banks and corporations while the government tears our Bill of Rights to shreds. But, you pay your bills on time. You probably never have though what hardships could have been destroying these peoples' lives. I guess none of this matters to you as our country enters into a realm far worse than George Orwell could have predicted.

looks like your internet

looks like your internet works fine. Maybe that should be a place to cut back, help with those ends meeting.

Im at the public library on

Im at the public library on wifi.


these towing co ,are making a lot of money what ,, its there job there life !!,, just because you work in a office and you dress nice and thats make you better ,
let me tell you all out there one thing ,, ifyour driveing a car and you dont have the right tags or ins on it , say by by ,, what would you say if you went in to a road block , im sorry to the ploice man and thats going to be ok ,,,, by by , if you park in the wrong spot or you dont have a sticker to park there by by ,,,, this is a job for the towing co. here in wilmington ,, your lucky down here , in up state ny if your parked in the road on the wrong day it by by time and there you pay $125 for the tow $75 for a the day ,,, so at frist your looking at $200.oo a tow , and dont for get the milage its right off the bat and thats $3.00 a mil so stop being mad over your wrong doing

"bye bye"

Everyone has financial problems every now and then that might cause you not to be able to meet all of your financial obligations on time. Your apartment is also your home and they should not be budding their noses into your business with the state government as to whether you pay your car taxes on time or not. As long as your car is not an eye sore and is not bringing down the property value by making it look bad, then it's not the apartment complex's business what you do with your own private property. BTW, it's not by by time, it's "bye-bye" time as in adios.

Common Sense

Dont blame the Tow company one bit. They are doing their job. Tags expire every year here in NC. She should be thanking the tow company for not charging her!
Just like you have to get a emissions test of every year for new tags! she wont let it happen it!

RE: Thanking Towing Company

You posted she should thank for the towing company for not charging her. Where in the article does it state the charges were waived? If you read the article, it states she was given a discount. It does not say it was free. Big difference.


These towing company's in ILM are out of control!!They have contracts with everyone!Its not about keeping a lot clean,its about making money!But ya should've had your junker in order in the first place..

That isn't true. Last year I

That isn't true. Last year I was out of work and my tags expired on my car. They had my car towed. When I called the office to discuss it with them, I was told that I needed to get the tags fixed or they would tow it again. They had no concern over my financial situation. They told me that it was a violation of my lease and that I had to have it fixed on the next business day.



No, It is none of the

No, It is none of the apartments business if a tenants tags are out.... They are not the police!!! As long as cars are kept up and not bringing down the value of the apartment, IT IS NONE OF THEIR BUSINESS!!! THEY ARE TRYING ANOTHER WAY TO SCAM THEIR TENANTS!!!! By the way learn how to talk dumbass!

State Issued Expired Tag....

I agree, my car was recently towed, and they said it had expired tags, my only concern was that I just got a temp tag, then find out the state of Washington issued me a temp tag that was already expired. Having an expired tag does not lower the value of anything, the apartment complex hires a towing company to perform predatory towing, and this should be illegal. Just 3 days ago, a car had all four of his wheels off his car for almost a week, why wasnt his car towed? Plain and Simple, predatory towing, and Washington State allows this.
and if you live in Washington State, then you will see predatory rent increases also that have little or nothing to do with market conditions. These apartment owners can not buy their way into heaven, so they take as much as they can before they die, and end up going to hell; power and greed, nothing more.