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Cars, chairs and fisticuffs

It was a western roundup of sorts.

Over the weekend, police in this suburb west of Pittsburgh rounded up kitchen chairs that motorists were using to stake out parking spaces that had been carved out of snow banks.

Sgt. Gary Scheimer ordered the chairs confiscated after six fights broke out over parking spots since last week's storm.

"People tie up a parking space for 24 hours just so they can have it when they want it. A lot of people are complaining they haven't been able to get a parking space on their own streets," Scheimer said.

Police in this town of 11,000 residents went street to street last weekend and rounded up about 200 chairs.

The chairs were tagged and taken to a municipal parking lot.

"I've been to the dog pound, but never to the chair pound," Daniel Malley said Monday as he claimed two folding chairs from the lot.

"It's a lot easier to pick up chairs than separate people who are fighting over parking spaces," Scheimer said.

Police Chief Robert McKibben supports the roundup. "When the weather warms, we hope that tempers will cool," McKibben said.

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