Woman’s Dodge Magnum stolen, but not a crime

Erica Battles reported her car stolen, but it ended up on the lot of a car dealership. Now, she wants answers, May 20, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)
Erica Battles reported her car stolen, but it ended up on the lot of a car dealership. Now, she wants answers, May 20, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN 6) — Erica Battle’s 2005 Dodge Magnum was stolen in October. She called the Portland police and said she let her boyfriend borrow the car, but it was his cousin who stole it.

Months later, her car was found at a dealership and was about to be sold.

“I was told someone would contact me if the vehicle was found. I didn’t hear anything for over six months,” she told KOIN 6 News. “Called the DMV and find out not only is it still in my name but a dealership has it on the lot and has plans to sell it.”

The owner of the tow company and car dealership, Steve Preston, said he impounded the car on November 6, 2013.

Preston said he picked up Battle’s car a week after it was reported stolen. The Dodge was listed as abandoned, and according to documents, he followed the correct protocol.

He contacted police and tried to get hold of Battle.

“We mailed it to her to (the address) DMV provided to us and it came back as Return to Sender, unable to forward,” he said.

The DMV confirmed that to KOIN 6 News.

Battle, though, said she never got anything.

PPB Sgt. Pete Simpson said they didn’t contact her because, “well, we wouldn’t notify her unless the car was stolen.”

Police said it’s a grey situation. Since she loaned her car to her boyfriend it’s not considered a criminal act.

KOIN 6 News put Battle in contact with the dealer.

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