Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote separately and singled out the situation of George Peake, whose 2007 Lincoln MKZ was impounded in 2018 for unpaid parking and red-light tickets. Sotomayor noted the “far too common” situation Peake found himself in.
"Drivers in low-income communities across the country face similar vicious cycles," she wrote, where a driver is fined an amount he cannot pay and that creates a spiral of late fees to where the vehicle is impounded. Without reliable transportation to work, bankruptcy may follow. Sotomayor said that despite the court's ruling, bankruptcy courts are not powerless to facilitate the return of vehicles. And she said Congress could pass legislation that helps speed vehicles' return.