That's Not Your Spot: On Your Side follows citizen police in Walmart parking lots

We asked and you responded.

In our last That's Not Your Spot story we asked where do you see folks illegally parked in handicap spots? You told us Walmart.

This time, we followed HEAT. That's the Handicap Enforcement Action Team with Springfield police. These volunteers are on a mission to help those who really need those spots.

For a few hours, every week, David Rendall and his partner Dennis Scharpf are on patrol.

"We enjoy what we are doing out here," said Scharpf.

No compensation. No pat on the back required. Here's why they care.

"I had a friend who was a paraplegic and I remember him saying how hard it was to find handicap spaces," said Rendall.

"My wife is handicap. We are both disabled so we know the frustrations that can be involved with the handicap parking," said Scharpf.

We tagged along with David and Dennis as they checked three Walmart Super Center parking lots. First stop, Glenstone and Kearney. It didn't take long for Rendall to find cars without the right tags or plates. He gave two warnings in less than five minutes. One hangtag was not properly displayed. Another driver had expired handicap plates.

Next stop, Kansas and Kearney. Rendall gave another warning for a not properly displayed hangtag. He spotted a vehicle with the proper tags, but parked on the stripes. Drivers can't park there.

"Since he's in the vehicle, I'm just going to just give a warning and explain to him what that's spot is for," said Rendall.

When the driver wouldn't move, Rendall then decided to issue the him a ticket. HEAT Volunteers are certified by city and police department to write tickets.

"We are issued a regular police ticket book. Our tickets are as good as an officers," he said.

Last stop, Sunshine and West ByPass.
Rendall gave another warning for a hangtag not properly displayed.

For nearly 30 years, HEAT has worked with the city of Springfield. Last year alone, seven volunteers issued nearly eight hundred tickets.
Remember, if you see someone illegally parked in a handicap spot.
Take a photo and use the hashtag #That'sNotYourSpot.