It’s not surprising that M&M Parking Management’s owner, Andrew Mirmelli, denies any involvement with Tremont Tow aka South Beach Tow.
But public records prove otherwise as I explain below.
It is unfortunate, however, that the local TV news media did not bother spending an extra few minutes on SunBiz.org to confirm this fact considering they had no problem putting him on camera last night where he flatly denied any involvement with the towing company that is coming under fire in recent weeks for it’s shady business practices.
But I’m still relieved that after almost 4 months of sharing my personal story and incident involving a private lot on Miami Beach and the Tremont Tow Thugs, the Miami local TV media picked up the story. I’ve been receiving many emails and comments from my readers for help on this situation, sharing their incidents and grievances with Tremont Tow.
Yesterday afternoon, I received an email from another victim stating that multiple cars were towed during his run-in at the infamous 17th street & Lennox parking lot owned by Andrew Mirmelli of M&M Parking Management. I posted a status on my Facebook wall, that read:
“I just got another story from a #Tremont victim about the lot on 17th & Lennox and it’s a doozey! Over 10+ victims at once during a children fundraiser at Temple Beth Shmuel. Instead of leaving their planned donations, they had to save the cash to bail out their cars from the Thugs at Tremont.”
Reporters from CBS 4 and ABC’s Local 10 contacted me and asked if I could share my story for the 11 o’clock news yesterday. They also wanted contact information for the victim I spoke about in my Facebook post, so they could include him in the story as well. Both news teams decided to head out to the lot on Lennox & 17th street for the report and I confirmed that I would meet them there. I immediately contacted several of the citizens that were victimized in this lot including the reader who had emailed me earlier in the day and Kris Conesa. You can read Kris Conesa’s story which was written by Francisco Alvarado of the Miami New Times here.
Unfortunately, the reader who had privately shared with me his incident with Tremont Tow, decided not to come forward publicly against M&M Parking and Tremont Tow.
Local photojournalist and writer of the South Florida blog RandomPixels.blogspot.com, Bill Cooke, wrote a great article yesterday about the history and background of the Tremont Tow Thugs in the City of Miami Beach. You can read his article here. Bill writes:
“In 1998, when Kissell wrote his story, Tremont and Beach Towing charged drivers about $95 to retrieve a towed car. Last year both companies went before the city commission in an effort to hike the $205 cost per tow another $64.
“It’s really not this multi-million dollar profiting business that’s been implied, in an way shape or form, at least not in the last four years,” Andrew Mirmelli [told the Miami Herald's David Smiley.]
“[Mirmelli,] who says his mother recently invested in Tremont only to find that no one is making any money from Miami Beach tows,” wrote Smiley.
CBS 4 news reporter, Brian Andrews, reported on the story here. There were several altercations with Brian and his ‘style’ of journalism during the taping. My boyfriend, Carlos Miller, was there with me yesterday and has been extremely supportive of my quest to expose the Tremont Thugs. In fact, this is how we met.
Carlos is a photojournalist and he immediately started recording with his Flip camera when I was being interviewed by Brian. He was being supportive and helpful, he was simply recording it for me. Brian got extremely irate and irritated with Carlos recording the entire ordeal. Carlos will be posting his story very soon regarding this incident with the video footage in question on his blog, Photography is Not a Crime.
I was also peeved with Brian Andrews when he told me “Don’t hold the dog on camera. It’s going to take away your credibility.” First of all, our dog Ruby Tuesday is a rescue that Carlos found on the streets in Miami. You can read about her story here. We’ve been trying to look for her owners and this was an opportunity for the owners to see her on camera. Secondly, my credibility is just fine with or without the dog. You can Google me or read my LinkedIn profile, Brian.
I told Brian that I would only do the interview holding the dog, so he obliged.
It was the top story on CBS 4′s 11 o’clock news. Here is Brian Andrew’s video report of the story:
I was very disappointed with the way this story was reported. Brian interviews Andrew Mirmelli and states that the “Rules of parking in this lot are crystal clear.” Please note that several of the signs that are shown on the video footage, were just put up by Mirmelli in the last week or so. The ambiguity continues when Brian’s reports and confirms that Mirmelli is aware that the parking meter “…doesn’t always work”, yet he fails to confront Mirmelli about this on camera. What should occupants of the lot do if the parking meter is out of order? Inquiring minds would like to know.
I even exposed the meter malfunctioning during this interview with a tourist who attempted to pay the fare, it aired on the segment.
The next point that irritated me personally, is the fact that Andrew Mirmelli denies any involvement with Tremont Tow. Brian simply states “That’s not true” about Mirmelli having part financial stake in Tremont.
Brian Andrews, I’d like to introduce you to a little tool called Sunbiz.org. Use it and you might learn something.
In the 2012 Annual Report for Tremont Towing, Inc., Andrew Mirmelli is listed as principal “T” which stands for Treasurer. You can view the document by clicking here.
On March 8th, 2012, an amended document is filed on Sunbiz.org for Tremont Towing, Inc. Andrew Mirmelli is removed from the company’s officers and this document can be viewed here. You will need to scroll down to page 4 to find Mirmelli’s name.
Interestingly enough, on March 9th, 2012 a new Florida Limited Liability Corporation is formed under the name of Tremont Towing Investments, LLC which lists its principal officer as Deidre Mirmelli. You can view the corporate formation documents here.
It appears that Deidre is mother to Andrew Mirmelli and they keep their investments in the ‘family’.
The news crew at ABC’s Local 10 were not as controversial as Mr. Andrews. Local 10′s reporter, Terrell Forney, did a good job asking questions and engaging with both Kris and I. Unfortunately over 30 minutes of camera time was left on the cutting room floor. Here is the segment that aired on ABC’s Local 10:
Again, Terrell Forney fails to uncover Andrew Mirmelli’s recent personal involvement with Tremont Tow as well as his mother Deidre’s financial ties to the company. You can visit Local 10′s site for their reporting on the story here.
I’m happy that the story was picked up by both stations, but am unhappy that the claims made by the reporters and Mirmelli were ambiguous. We still have a major parking problem in the City of Miami Beach where cars are being towed under lot owner’s shady pretenses. The fact that the parking machine is faulty and doesn’t work properly is a clear indication that M&M Parking Management has no qualms with towing cars and making a fast buck.
Kris Conesa, another Tremont Tow and M&M Parking victim, gave me his official statement regarding last night’s stories:
“It is my contention and that of many other citizens that the owners of this lot and Tremont Towing are engaging in deceptive business practices by perpetrating as if that lot is a city lot when in fact it is not. By design, it is meant to be confusing.
They have gone out of their way to acquire lots next to public parking lots and then they install meters that are identical to the one the city uses in a criminal effort effort to deceive unwitting motorists to park their cars there. When the meter expires, or as in my case, someone pays at the meter across the street because of a malfunctioning machine or a long line at the single meter they have in place, their car gets towed within minutes.
It is my opinion that Tremont and M&M Parking are acting in collusion to defraud the general driving public and line their pockets. It’s deceitful, fraudulent and an outright scam that needs to come to an end.”
Bill Cooke further informs us of Andrew Mirmelli’s jaded past in his most recent story. You can read it here.
I’m happy that the story was picked up by both stations, but am unhappy that the claims made by the reporters and Mirmelli were ambiguous. We still have a major parking problem in the City of Miami Beach where cars are being towed under lot owner’s shady pretenses. The fact that the parking machine is faulty and doesn’t work properly is a clear indication that M&M Parking Management has no qualms with towing cars and making a fast buck. The City of Miami Beach continues to lend a blind eye to the situation since the massacre is happening on private lots owned by Mirmelli et al.
I will continue to write about the Tremont Tow incidents to raise awareness and urge politicians to take a formal stance on this issue. Michael Gongora, Michael Greico & Jerry Libbin – I am waiting for your statements. As a Miami Beach resident, my vote is still undecided.
If you have a story about Tremont Tow a.k.a. South Beach Tow, please send it me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Update: I just want to share with all my readers, friends and foes that I was caught in a massive rain storm yesterday and I was wearing zero make-up. I had also spent the last 48 hours with little sleep and lot’s of work moving from one beach apartment to another. It was all about getting the story into the public light and not about my looks which is the reason I decided to go through with both interviews. Carlos & I were on our way to pick up a couch and take it to my new place in his car when I received the calls from the reporters. C’est la vie!