Use of Handicapped Parking Scrutinized at Arrowhead Stadium

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A Chiefs fan is disgruntled after Sunday's game against the San Diego Chargers -- but not because the Chiefs lost. He's frustrated over alleged misuse of handicapped parking spaces.

Chris Sampson said his friend took cell phone video of what appeared to be an able-bodied person -- parked in a handicapped parking space -- load a wheelchair with party supplies then walk away. Sampson said the driver of the car used a disabled parking mirror tag.

"It's the biggest insult to all insults in this issue," Sampson said. "It's a total disregard to No. 1, what they're doing -- and No. 2, who's around them seeing it."

Sampson isn't alone. Pete Williams works for The Whole Person, a non-profit group that assists disabled people in learning to live independently. He, like Sampson, uses a lift-van and needs the bigger disabled parking space so his wheelchair can access the van. Both he and Sampson said parking attendants at Arrowhead don't check close enough.

"They're directing traffic -- park here, park there," he said. "There should be parking attendants doing some checks, driving around to see if people have the proper tags."

Sampson said the misuse of handicapped parking has increased over the years.

"There's no concern for the true need for disable parking out there," he said.

The Chiefs' public relations office said it has no comment on the issue. Jim Rowland with the Jackson County Sports Authority said Royals and Arrowhead stadiums share 507 disabled parking spaces, and it's up to the home ball club -- Chiefs or Royals -- to staff parking attendants.

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