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Hank Investigates

BPD officers parking in bus stops

Now a story you'll see on just one station: they're supposed to enforce the law but we found some Boston Police employees are brazenly breaking the rules when it comes to parking, making it tough on patients at a local health clinic. That is until Hank started asking questions. Hank Investigates.

"It's dangerous," Frederick Williams, a patient at the Whittier Health Center, said.

Williams says trying to catch the bus home from appointments at the brand new Whittier Health Center is hazardous to his health.

His bus stop is right across the street from the health center at the corner of Tremont and Prentiss in Roxbury.

And here's the problem: so many cars are illegally parking, blocking the entire bus stop, patients have to step into oncoming traffic to get it.

"A car could come by and hit you while you're waiting for the bus," Williams said.

Navigating a baby stroller through all the parked cars was too much for Anna Ruiz who now uses a different bus stop.

"I think that's not right," Ruiz said.

So how are all these cars getting away with illegally parking? Well check this out: the bus stop happens to be about 300 feet away from Boston Police Headquarters, with its own giant parking lot.

But we watched for more than a week and found car, after car, after car, blocking the bus stop.

And many of the cars had "Boston Police Headquarters Employee" stickers and BPD "Official Business" placards in their dashboards. Other vehicles were clearly unmarked police cars complete with police lights in their windshields.

"They have a big parking lot they should park their cars there, so the bus can stop there," Ruiz said.

And our investigation uncovered the illegal parkers were getting away with it. We obtained a database of all parking tickets issued by the Boston Transportation Department in the last year.

Since Jan. 1, only one ticket was written for blocking the bus stop here at Tremont and Prentiss.

"Why shouldn't the cops follow the rules like everyone else? " Williams asked.

The day after we requested these records, the Boston Transportation Department ticketed two cars and towed one parked in the bus stop.

But after that the illegal parking resumed, and we continued taping, until a police officer questioned our photographer. Moments later another Boston Police officer showed up and started ticketing the cars parked in the bus stop.

A 7News investigator waited for the driver to come back.

"We're with 7 News can we talk to you about why you're parking in a bus stop?"

And he slammed the car door in our face.

And look what happened the very next day, Boston Police clearly took action: no illegally parked cars and a barricade reminding people: a bus stop is a no parking zone.

Boston Police didn't want to talk to us on camera. But they told us in a statement: "we expect our officers to comply with parking regulations relating to public safety or else they could be disciplined."

BPD says if you see police cars blocking fire hydrants, handicapped spaces or bus stops, let them know.