Woman upset with police after tow company sells her stolen car

By Jon Johnson


SAFFORD – A woman who said she reported her car stolen to Phoenix Police in June 2018 became irate with police after learning it had languished in a tow company’s impound lot and was then eventually sold. 

The vehicle was initially impounded Aug. 6, 2018, in Safford after it was involved in a traffic stop. At that time, there was no indication that the vehicle was stolen.

After nobody retrieved the car, the tow company applied for and received an abandoned title and sold the vehicle to make up for its storage fees. Only when the new owner attempted to register the vehicle with the Motor Vehicle Division on April 26 did any notification come to light that the car had been entered as being stolen. At that time, the officers believed the entry to be false or outdated and advised MVD to take it off the stolen vehicle list.

On April 29, the original car owner called the Safford Police Department and complained that she had never been informed her vehicle had been located and was impounded. An officer later learned that the vehicle had been listed as being stolen Aug. 7, 2018, one day after it had been impounded. 

The original owner complained that she should have been notified that someone else was driving her car, however, the officer informed her that was not the department’s protocol and that perhaps the Phoenix Police had delayed entering the car as being stolen, resulting in no notification to officers when they impounded it.

The officer reported that the original owner did not want to listen to what he was saying and refused to use the information to help find a resolution.