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In Legal Peril, Seattle’s ‘Belltown Hellcat’ Is Ordered to Yield

U.S.In Legal Peril, Seattle’s ‘Belltown Hellcat’ Is Ordered to Yield

A man whose thundering Dodge Charger has tormented Seattle residents for months was ordered Tuesday to pay a fine of more than $83,000, the most serious penalty the city has imposed in months of enforcement efforts that have, until now, been largely ineffective.

Miles Hudson, the driver who is known to many downtown residents and his more than 750,000 Instagram followers as the Belltown Hellcat, appeared in Seattle Municipal Court wearing a balaclava and sunglasses that shielded his face from the waiting television crews. He told Judge Faye Chess that he had been working on restoring the car to its factory design.

“I do have documentation of my car being in the shop and parts being ordered if the court would like to see that,” Mr. Hudson told the court.

The judge was not ready to let him off the hook, though, agreeing to the city’s request to issue penalties for violations of the city’s noise rules. City officials said the fine was assessed at $1,300 per day.

“Today’s ruling is a meaningful step toward stopping Mr. Hudson’s hazardous and nuisance activity,” Ann Davison, the Seattle city attorney, said in a statement. “Our laws matter, and it’s time for him to comply with them.”

Downtown residents have complained for much of the year about the tiger-striped muscle car that roars through the city at night, its tailpipes backfiring with such force that windows rattle, waking people to what some have mistaken for gunfire.


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