A towing company owned by a Bonney Lake judge is under investigation again by the Washington State Patrol.
WSP is looking into whether Engel's towing, owned by Judge Ron Heslop, is breaking the law by offering low-cost legal services to property owners who hire the company.
So-called pay for play is illegal in Washington, according to Brad Benfield of the state Department of Licensing.
"The law is very clear about prohibiting offering anything as an incentive anything of monetary value," Benfield said.
Two former Engel's employees, Alan Laney and Steve Dagget, charge that the company is doing just that.
"I was given the paperwork and said, you know, 'Just talk to people, just get them to sign the contract. Tell them we'll tow their cars for, we'll give them free services for them and their employees,'" said Laney.
That paperwork is a flyer, allegedly signed by Heslop, that says Engel's "will represent you or any of your employees to contest traffic tickets for a fee of $100. If that matter is not excluded from the driving record, there will be no charge. We look forward to serving your downing needs."
Asked about the employees' claims, Heslop said, "The two drivers that you have information from quit, because my manager and I would not tolerate the way they treated customers. They both left customers stranded and quit."
Heslop also said that "the two drivers never got a contract for me."
Laney and Daggett said they did not quit or leave Engel's customers stranded.
Investigators said the case should wrap up sometime in the next few weeks.
Engel's Towing has been fined more than $20,000 over the past four years for breaking state towing laws.
KING 5 News has also learned that Heslop has decided to appeal the charges levied against his other towing company -- Puyallup Towing. In that case, the state asked for a one-year revocation of the company's license and a $23,000 fine