It used to be named Parrino’s Service Station in the 70’s and early 80’s, but Parrino got caught sending stolen cars to Archer Auto junkyard in Lawrence in 1985 and had to close in 1986 ( see HERE ).
Not long after, in early August, 1986, Valley Towing was formed by Ronald Bellanti a former Mass State Trooper with it’s office located at Parrino’s house, 152 Merrimack St. in Methuen. In early October of 1986 The DPU Certificate was transferred to the new corporation, Valley Towing.
Only four and a half years later, on 1/14/91 Valley Towing filed a change of directors with the Secretary of State transferring ownership of Valley Towing to Parrino. (see State Filings HERE and DPU Filings HERE ).
Once your vehicle is in Valley’s possession, a process begins to acquire ownership of the vehicle through the state lien statutes. However, Valley is supposed to mail out a certified letter within 5 days of towing the vehicle according to Section 11 of their Towing Contract, or else forfeit the fee for any storage after five days. Instead they wait, racking up sometimes insurmountable storage charges like they did to Liam, and Chris.
In some cases, Valley sends vehicles to Fram’s Auto, a junkyard a half mile away on the same street. They do this without documentation usually, but sometimes surreptitiously forge paperwork stating they could not contact the owner, to save from having to advertise in the newspaper or go pay court filing and attorney fees, and avoid answering for their crimes. Sometimes Valley Towing outright steals vehicles from private property and sends the local chop-shop.
Frams and police
Tom Fram was a Methuen Police officer for decades retiring as Captain. He still works for the department part-time doing details.
His cousin George DuFour still owns and operates the family buisness Fram Auto Corporation, which was owned by Tom’s uncle, John Fram who has since passed away. Tom’s parents still live down the little side street the junkyard is on. Parrino and the Frams have been friends and doing business together for over 50 years.
Frams and Licensing Board
According to Court Records, see [NOTE] in or around late 2014 or early 2015, the Licensing Board issued a violation notice to Frams Auto with respect to the use of a property located at 281 Merrimack Street in Methuen they owned.
Despite this VIOLATION, Frams Auto’s Class II Car Dealer and class III Junkyard licenses remained active and were never suspended.
In his affidavit, Dufour stated that “[Fram Auto] allowed Class III uses to creep into the front lots (those closer to Merrimack Street), which were solely licensed for Class II uses.
This is the same property that has since been sold to Elias Kanj, who was previously employed as a manager of Frams Auto before he purchased the property, intending to use it to open his own car dealership under the name of Pine Hill Motors LLC.
Elias Kanj is a friend of Parrino and has appeared in front of Mr. Parrino and the Licensing Board numerous times with favorable results.
The City of Methuen argued Fram’s Auto abandoned the use of a piece of property as a car dealership. Although Mr. Parrino’s brother Peter Parrino operated a bottle and can redemption center ” Valley Redemption Center ” out of that location, Mr. Parrino never informed the zoning board who opposed the car dealers license at that location.
Police and Parrino
Solomon, Haggar, Havey, and others, often appear in front of Parrino at the Methuen City Licensing Board hearings to represent the Police Department on behalf of the city against defendant companies in violation of Licensing Laws and Rules. Parrino oversees the Junkyard License for Fram’s Auto. Sgt. Havey oversees enforcement for the licensing board.
“Sgt. Havey of the Methuen Police Dept. spoke and said he does inspections each year. You all know when we are coming. I asked the board to bring you in. Put your book in order. We constantly have a problem. It is a violation of the law and we are tired of the same places, same things, repeat offenders. You know there are reasons, Stolen car issues, the book needs to be on property. I will be spot checking. List the car when it comes in no “I don’t list it till it’s sold”, or “that car just came in”. I am not looking to hurt anyone. There is a difference in a 10 car limit than a 30 car limit. If you need a higher car limit, apply for one. It’s not fair to the guy that does play by the rules. I don’t want to see this again.”
Here are transcripts of some meeting minutes of the Methuen Licensing Board, Dufour and Fram’s in front of Havey and Parrino:
According to the meeting minutes, Frams books were in disarray, a perfect place to sell stolen cars. And according to the court case above see [NOTE], Fram’s didn’t face any suspension.
Looks like Fram’s didn’t get in any trouble with David’s Stolen Truck either, just read Havey’s REPORT. No violations to bring to the Licensing Board, no criminal charges. Just an honest mistake.
In January we started adding info to our website about Sgt. Havey doing enforcement for the Licensing Board. On 1/12/18 Sgt. Havey retired from the Methuen Police Department.
So here lies the problem, who’s going to arrest a friend….?
Methuen Police policy on the use of discretion was evidenced just a couple of years ago in the Civil Service Hearing of Michael Phillips v. City of Methuen, CSC Case No. G1-15-45 (2015), Suffolk, ss, dated 7/9/15.
The Civil Service Commision took particular dislike to the attitude of one of the panelist, Lt. Michael Papalardo during this process.
MA STATE TROOPER INDICTED IN SCHEME
This is the same ‘Salvage Vehicle Inspection Unit’ where Mass State Police Trooper Dana Atkinson works. He is the guy the State Police sent David Lee to speak to at the Haverhill Location, the same location where Fram’s Auto was sending vehicles to now indicted MA State Police Trooper Forrest.
These vehicles were coming from Cambridge Mass with, and on behalf of, Anzor Tsarnaev, father of the Boston Marathon Bombers.
Influence for sale
Parrino’s been peddling his influence in Methuen for a very long time…
Read about Parrino’s girlfriend, Karen Toto, a long-time City of Lawrence parking enforcement officer and sister to a Mass State Police Trooper. She wad been collecting workers’ compensation payments since Oct. 4, 2013, when a doctor said an on-the-job injury left her unable to work. She was caught working at Valley Towing in 2017, Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera said he stopped by the city contracted towing company at 3am during a snow storm as part of a check on the towing and snow removal contractors, and he saw Parrino’s girlfriend Karen Toto dispatching.
One reviewer on YELP warned in 2015 that “she wrote to the Attorney General, and if you are reading this, you should do the same”.
East End Auto Sales
Parrino also owns and operates a used car dealership at the same address as Valley Towing. This allows him to do MA title transfers and MA title reassignments. And guess who oversees used car dealer licenses…? Ron Parrino