Consumer Watch: Towing company used as pawn in car theft


Posted on February 10, 2010 at 7:09 PM

This week’s Consumer Watch is an unusual case about a stolen car in Bullitt County.

The thieves used an unsuspecting tow truck driver to remove the car from a parking lot.

Nick Carter told WHAS11’s Andy Treinen his story.

"From the time that we found out our car was stolen to the time we got it back it was just chaos," said Carter.

The police report helps to tell the story of how two men used Dave’s Towing to pull off a car heist.

The two men flagged down a tow truck driver at a nearby pizza parlor and told him they had locked their keys and wallet in their car. They then asked if he would tow it back to their home in Shively.

Carter’s car was parked in the spillover lot for Preston Village Homes. He says the towing company had no idea who the car belonged to when they had it hauled off.

That made our crew wonder if anyone, anywhere could have any car towed away.

"You don't even have to be there when they pick up the car. You can call and say, ‘I've got a car sitting on the side of the road here’ and they'll pick it up," says Carter.

In the defense of Dave’s Towing, Andy called several towing companies and all of them say they’ve towed cars without confirming ownership.   

The owner of Dave’s Towing says in his 30 years of business, this was the first time anyone had used his company to try to steal a car.

He also pointed out that his driver was also a victim at the drop off location.

The owner said his driver was already back in the truck and they pulled a gun on him. That's when he took off.

The driver called police and they directed him back to Carter who had called police to report the car stolen.

Carter got his car back, but said it was damaged during the tow.

"I didn't drive it till the next morning and that's when I realized the alignment was off and it's bad," Carter said.

Carter’s estimate also indicated the ball-joints and tie rods are also damaged, but Dave’s claims that had nothing to do with the tow. 

Now, Carter has to decide whether to accept the company’s offer to fix the alignment or to pursue other options through an attorney.

The owner of Dave’s Towing says his company was also a victim in this crime and he stands firmly behind his driver.

The two men who attempted to steal the car have not been caught.