Car racks up 678 tickets, $100,000 in fines

Registered owner believes she shouldn't have to pay

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CHICAGO - The city of Chicago is telling a car owner she must pay the 678 tickets placed on her car, which has been parked in the same parking spot for the last three years.

However, the registered owner says she shouldn't be liable for the more than $100,000 owed to the city.

According to a lawsuit filed in Cook County Circuit Court, Jennifer Fitzgerald plans to sue the city, her ex-boyfriend and United Airlines. Fitzgerald claims she did not drive the car after February 2009. City records show the tickets began piling up in November 2009.

The car in question -- a 1999 Chevy Monte Carlo -- has been parked in the same parking spot at Chicago O'Hare International Airport for three years. According to the city of Chicago's web site, the car has been given 678 tickets, totaling $105,761.80 in fines. The car is worth $600.

In the lawsuit, Fitzgerald claims her ex-boyfriend -- Brandon Preveau -- bought the Monte Carlo from her uncle in February 2008. According to the lawsuit, "for reasons unrecalled by [Fitzgerald's uncle]," he signed the title of the car over to his niece instead of Preveau.

Fitzgerald claims Preveau paid for the car, the license plates, the Chicago city sticker and the car insurance. She argues she should not be liable for the $105,000 in fines because she wasn't supposed to be the owner.

According to the lawsuit, a judge told Fitzgerald in 2011 she must transfer the title of her car out of her name. She says she signed over the title to Preveau, but claims he "intentionally did not register the transfer of title with the Illinois Secretary of State."

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