The strange tale of Jeff Bezos’s $16,840 parking ticket bill

February 7, 2020, 6:19 PM UTC
Jeff Bezos-parking tickets
Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and Blue Origin speaks during the JFK Space Summit, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, at the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., June 19, 2019. REUTERS/Katherine Taylor
Katherine Taylor—Reuters

No one’s entirely sure why Jeff Bezos sold $1.8 billion of Amazon stock in the past week, but we’ve got a new theory: Parking tickets.

The world’s richest man is renovating a former textile museum into a home in a Washington D.C. neighborhood. And WUSA, a CBS affiliate in the city, notes that police have written $16,840 in tickets on the block his house is located on since work on the project began.

That’s a total of 564 tickets (all of which, it’s worth noting, have been paid off). Nintey-three of those were given in April 2018.

Workers (we’re assuming it was workers and not Bezos himself) apparently routinely ignored “No Parking” signs and parked in spaces reserved for residents as they worked on the house. (Contractors were required to sign non-disclosure agreements, so it’s impossible to weed out which of the tickets were not tied to the renovation.)

Bezos is converting the 34,000 square foot former factory into a mansion that includes 11 bedrooms, a ballroom, a wine cellar, a whiskey tasting room, and a movie theater, according to blue prints and permits filed with local government. He paid $26 million for the building in 2016 and has spent a reported $12 million to renovate it.

Bezos’s neighbors in the Kalorama neighborhood will include Barack and Michelle Obama and Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner.

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