City sues "Robin Hood" group that prevents parking tickets

Members of "Robin Hood of Keene" are being sued by city officials over the group's efforts to help residents of the New Hampshire community avoid getting parking tickets
Oli Scarff/Getty Images via CBS connecticut
(CBS) KEENE, N.H. - A group of "merry men and women" calling themselves Robin Hood of Keene say they're just doing right by their neighbors, by filling up the southern New Hampshire city's parking meters before police can hand out tickets.

The city is unconvinced of their good intentions and is suing the Robin Hood group, claiming they interfere with and intimidate parking enforcement officers, CBS Boston reports.

Six men and women in the community community routinely drop coins in parking meters that have run out of time.

"It's really just a goodwill gesture," said Ian Freeman, one of the people named in the lawsuit.

In court documents, city officials say the group has "...taunted, interfered with, harassed and intimidated the Parking Enforcement Officers..."

Those officers say they have been physically bumped. Some say they are considering leaving their jobs, according CBS Boston.

One officer says, "I have begun to suffer physical effects due to the stress...and having dreams related to this activity."

The members of Robin Hood are part of Free Keene, an organization dedicated to limiting government involvement in people's lives.

"I think it's unfortunate that they're choosing this tactic," said group member Garret Ean about the lawsuit. "I haven't witnessed anything that I would consider harassment on a consistent behavior."

City officials tell CBS Boston the lawsuit is not about lost revenue from all the potential parking tickets. Rather they fear someone is going to get hurt.

"It's a very unsafe situation," said City Manager John MacLean. "It's harassing behavior."

Photo: Oli Scarff/Getty Images via CBS connecticut