Tow Company Forced out of Business Firm Violated Consumer Laws, Missouri's Attorney General Says
Bill Smith Of the Post-Dispatch, St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)
The South County towing company that came under fire last week for towing vehicles without a city license has shut down, Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon said Monday.
Nixon said that a consent injunction issued in St. Louis Circuit Court permanently bars State Towing, 8001 Gravois Road, and its owner, Vincent Anthony Mancuso, from operating a towing service in Missouri.
Nixon said that evidence uncovered by his office indicated that State Towing has engaged in unfair business practices that are in direct violation of Missouri consumer protection laws.
But in the agreement with the attorney general's office, neither Mancuso nor State Towing admitted to any wrongdoing.
In a telephone interview, Nixon warned that if any of those involved with State Towing attempted to defraud consumers through another towing company "we will be equally vigilant."
Monday's agreement was announced one week after the Post-Dispatch reported that drivers had been charged up to $480 each to reclaim cars after the vehicles were towed from a gravel lot near Seventh Street and Lafayette Avenue, in the Soulard Farmers Market area.
DeLores and Joseph Sanfilippo owned the lot. They are parents of Joey Sanfilippo who said he was manager of State Towing.
Nixon said Monday he was still seeking civil penalties and consumer restitution from Mancuso and State Towing, as well as from Joey Sanfilippo and Richland L. Stockamp Jr. In a telephone interview Monday, Stockamp said he had worked as a subcontractor for Sanfilippo and State Towing, and was paid $100 per tow once a vehicle was reclaimed. But Stockamp denied that he had any other involvement with State Towing. …