Franklin police threatening tickets

Published 11:22 am Saturday, June 7, 2014

To the Editor:

This morning, I went with my neighbor to a monthly food bank site (Food Bank/United Way based in Norfolk). I have recently lost my job, so this visit was my first to this venue, which was the Forest Pines neighborhood in Franklin. When we arrived, there were Franklin Police Officers there telling people to leave or get a ticket. The Food Bank personnel were told if they gave any food away they would be arrested. The food bank worker I spoke with noted they had been doing donations for over 2 years at this locale with no “incidents.” A woman next to us, with handicapped plates, was obviously disabled as she walked to her car and stated, “I drove almost an hour… .” I had my neighbor drive back to the entrance of the complex. There is a sign there that states, “Private Property.” OK, well has it not been private the last 2 years. THEN next to that is a sign, purchased with taxpayer dollars, “RADAR ENFORCED SPEED LIMIT.” Now, if the city of Franklin or VDOT maintains these streets as well as patrols “PRIVATE PROPERTY,” then I think something is amiss. I was told at a shopping center recently that an officer couldn’t help me, I was on “private property.” What gives? Probably depends on who is making a complaint. Look how much support was NOT given to Liberty Coins recently. It is a shame to threaten people and volunteers at a food bank site. I doubt a drug complaint would rate as quick a reaction.

Michelle Steward