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Customers booted after paying for fake parking passes in Downtown Austin

CBS Austin

Friday nights in Austin are busy, making free parking hard to find. That’s why Scott Clayton and friends chose paid parking at the corner of Guadalupe and W. 3rd Street Friday night before heading to a concert.

The parking lot they chose is operated by Premium Parking, but someone else, who was wearing a reflective vest, but doesn’t work for the company, was selling tickets for spaces on the lot on Friday night.

Clayton is one of at least four people who bought a pink parking pass from the imposter.

"There was a line at the machine, so I decided to pay [him], and [he] gave me the card," Clayton said.

He paid $10 for the parking pass and wound up with a boot on his car that cost him around $40 to have removed – a discount from the regular $120 fee that Premium Parking was able to work out with the towing company.

Premium Parking is reimbursing Clayton and the three other people for the boot removal after they fell victim to the trick, but they want to warn other customers about the scam.

"It sounds like somebody got maybe got some tickets from another parking companies valet and was impersonating a lot attendant and telling people to pay them,” Premium Parking President Ben Montgomery said. "Our lots are all license plate based and payment thru the machine or over the mobile phone."

The company operates about 20 parking lots around Austin and they say they never use parking attendants to collect money at any of their lots. Customers who were booted after paying for a fake parking pass can call Premium Parking customer service at 844-236-2011 and ask for a reimbursement.

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