The Massachusetts State Police driver who chauffeured Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito to Cape Cod is apologizing for parking in a spot reserved for the disabled.
A reporter for the Cape Cod Times photographed the black Ford Explorer in the space outside an office building in Hyannis on Thursday. There was no disabled parking placard or license plate visible on the vehicle.
"My wife has a handicap plate," said Bill Markham. "She had polio. She has one very thin leg and I understand the need for handicap spaces."
The Republican lieutenant governor was on the Cape to attend several events.
State police spokesman David Procopio tells the newspaper the trooper made an honest mistake and has apologized for unknowingly violating a "cardinal rule."
Police released a statement, which states, in part: "There was no elevated metal sign at the head of the parking spot. The trooper was never aware that he had parked in a handicapped spot until long after he had left the event."
Procopio says the unnamed trooper was directed into the space, and neither he nor Polito knew it was a restricted spot.
Coreen Brinckerhoff the CEO of CORD, which is an organization that advocates for the disable, said the mistake should have never happened.
"Not only was it in the parking space but also into the access aisle, which is critical to people with disabilities," said Brinckerhoff.
Parking in a disabled spot usually carries a $100 fine in Barnstable.