News & Politics

Why Did Sebastian Gorka Park on the Sidewalk in Arlington?

The thing about having vanity license plates is that your vehicle can be spotted fairly easily. So it didn’t take very long for the black Ford Mustang with the Virgina tags reading “ART WAR” to be identified as the personal ride of former White House employee Sebastian Gorka. The late-model convertible was spotted on a sidewalk next to Gateway Park in Rosslyn on Tuesday afternoon, sitting empty and creating quite the impediment to potential passersby.

Gorka, who left the White House in August after failing to obtain a security clearance to work on national-security issues, did not respond to questions about why he parked his car in a blatantly unlawful area.

Arlington County Code states that:

“No person shall stop, stand, or park a vehicle, except when necessary to avoid conflict with other traffic or in compliance with the directions of a police officer or traffic-control device, in any of the following places:

1. On a sidewalk;
2. In front of a public or private driveway;
3. Within an intersection

The penalty for obstructing traffic or parking in an illegal zone is $50.

UPDATE, 11/1: Reached by email, Gorka refuses to explain his unorthodox parking job. “I suppose you think you’re a journalist, right?” he writes back to me. “How amusing.”

Staff Writer

Benjamin Freed joined Washingtonian in August 2013 and covers politics, business, and media. He was previously the editor of DCist and has also written for Washington City Paper, the New York Times, the New Republic, Slate, and BuzzFeed. He lives in Adams Morgan.