parking placard

Assistant Commissioner of City Dept. Faces 7 Years in Prison for Fake Parking Placard

What to Know

  • The assistant commissioner of a city department is facing years behind bars after being accused of using a fake parking placard.
  • Assistant Commissioner of Property Management and Client Services of the city's Department of Housing Preservation and Development Vivian Louie, 48 and of Queens, was arraigned on charges of possession of a fraudulent parking placard and operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license.
  • Louie, who has been part of the department since April 2007 and earns about $148,000, was arraigned Wednesday in New York County Criminal Court and pled not guilty to the charges. Louie is due back in court on Jan. 7, 2021.

The assistant commissioner of a city department is facing years behind bars after being accused of using a fake parking placard.

Assistant Commissioner of Property Management and Client Services of the city's Department of Housing Preservation and Development Vivian Louie, 48 and of Queens, was arraigned on charges of possession of a fraudulent parking placard and operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license, the Commissioner of the New York City Department of Investigation (DOI), Margaret Garnett, and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. jointly announced Wednesday.

Louie is charged with criminal possession of a forged instrument in the second degree, a D class felony, and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the third degree, a misdemeanor.

If Louie is convicted, a class D felony is punishable by up to seven years in prison and the misdemeanor is punishable by up to a $500 fine, or imprisonment of up to 30 days, or both.

Louie, who has been part of the department since April 2007 and earns about $148,000, was arraigned Wednesday in New York County Criminal Court and pled not guilty to the charges. Louie is due back in court on Jan. 7, 2021.

According to the DOI and the district attorney, Louie had a photocopied fraudulent parking placard in the dashboard of her vehicle while parked in a space in Manhattan and the defendant acknowledged to investigators the placard was fake, according to the criminal complaint.

DOI began its investigation after receiving a referral from HPD’s Disciplinary Director indicating a potentially fraudulent placard was in the window of a vehicle parked near HPD’s headquarters in Manhattan. The Office of Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. is prosecuting the case.

According to the criminal complaint and DOI’s investigation, on March 6, at around 5:10 p.m. in front of 8 Spruce St. in Manhattan, a DOI investigator saw the fraudulent parking placard in the window of a 1998 Toyota Rav4 while the vehicle was parked in a metered space. The placard allegedly appeared photocopied and did not have the City Department of Transportation holographic emblem that appears on genuinely issued placards, according to the charges.

Allegedly, Louie also told a DOI investigator that the placard was fake and upon checking the vehicle with the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles, the DOI investigator found that Louie's license had been suspended for failure to answer a summons and had not been reinstated.

“DOI is committed to investigating abuses of parking placards and holding public officials accountable for attempting to manipulate a system that is meant to assist City employees in their service to the public," Garnett said in a statement.

HPD has been informed of Louie's arrest, according to DOI.

In a statement to NBC 4 New York, HPD said: “HPD referred the case to DOI and has been cooperating with the agency. We take placard abuse seriously and hold our employees to a high standard of conduct.”

Copyright NBC New York
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