Fake Out: Woman Uses False ID to Steal Car From Dealership

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey

Here's a story involving shady behavior and dealerships that is a flip of what we've covered lately. In this case, it's a would-be customer screwing the dealership.

ABC13 out of Texas reports that a customer took a test drive and didn't return.

The woman first came to the small dealership two weeks ago to test drive a 2014 Chevrolet Impala that was on sale for $14,000. She then told the store that she'd be back when her tax return arrived. Indeed, she returned one week later to test-drive the car again.

"She said, 'I like this car. Can I test drive it?' I told her, 'OK', and I took the driver's license and a phone number," store owner Ahmad Hallal told ABC13.

"She said I'll go for 10 minutes to test drive, but one hour, two hours, she never showed up, she never came back," Hallal added.

Hallal tried calling the woman and she didn't answer. He called the cops, and they realized the Louisiana ID she'd left behind was a fake.

Now Hallal is out a $14,000 car.

Of course, maybe the woman left a fake ID instead of a real one because she was afraid it would be peed on.

[Image: karenfoleyphotography/Shutterstock.com]

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Tim Healey
Tim Healey

Tim Healey grew up around the auto-parts business and has always had a love for cars — his parents joke his first word was “‘Vette”. Despite this, he wanted to pursue a career in sports writing but he ended up falling semi-accidentally into the automotive-journalism industry, first at Consumer Guide Automotive and later at Web2Carz.com. He also worked as an industry analyst at Mintel Group and freelanced for About.com, CarFax, Vehix.com, High Gear Media, Torque News, FutureCar.com, Cars.com, among others, and of course Vertical Scope sites such as AutoGuide.com, Off-Road.com, and HybridCars.com. He’s an urbanite and as such, doesn’t need a daily driver, but if he had one, it would be compact, sporty, and have a manual transmission.

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5 of 26 comments
  • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Mar 15, 2023

    I had a riding buddy who's father owned the local Honda dealership. i was there looking at a Ridgeline. We where BS'ing while getting the papers ready for a test drive. I asked him about any "weird" cases. They had a fellow sign out a SUV for an extended test drive. It ended up in Miami Florida roughly 6,000 km away. The fellow left it at a dealership there. Apparently the test drive agreement fine print stated that as long as it was returned to any Honda dealership, it wasn't theft. They ended up selling there since that was less costly than getting it home.

  • DenverMike DenverMike on Mar 15, 2023

    It could be the perfect car for the solo (test) driveaway. Plus it's embezzled, not actually stolen. She could drive it for many years without getting stopped (for expired tags).

    None of this is possible in a Lamborghini Countach (regardless of color).

  • 28-Cars-Later 28-Cars-Later on Mar 15, 2023

    Unless this was headed to Mexico, or a chop shop, it seems foolish to me. There are too many inspections, registrations, and forms at public shops to keep one of these in your possession without a title. Edit: I was going to opine it was good the dealer got ripped off for selling $5,000 cars for $14,000 but then I checked the block, I can't believe the money on cleaner '14 W-Impalas in LT:2/24/23 $11,500 58,884 4.2 6G/A Silver Regular West Coast Nevada

    2/28/23 $8,800 64,232 3.6 6CY/A-- Regular Northeast myCentralAuction

    2/23/23 $9,000 69,940 --6G/A Black Regular Midwest Chicago

    3/6/23 $9,500 75,647 3.66G/A White Lease Northeast Fredericksburg

    3/6/23 $10,800 *83,572 4.06G/A White Regular Southeast Rome Auto Auction

    The rough examples pull between $3,5-6,0 which I think is still kinda high given what it is but well...

    • MaintenanceCosts MaintenanceCosts on Mar 16, 2023

      The W-Impala has a very devoted constituency, mostly concerned with the fact that it's pretty much the cheapest way there is to get 300 horsepower.

  • Wjtinfwb Wjtinfwb on Mar 16, 2023

    This generation Impala was a pretty decent car, nice enough to be the same basic sled as a Cadillac XTS. But has been mentioned, it sounds like this car was stolen to order. Someone needed a black Impala, for parts, to clone, who knows. Most car thefts are of opportunity, keys left in the car, engine running at a C-store or perhaps a car jacking. This type of theft is more specific and nuanced and I'd guess the post about duplicating documents before returning is pretty accurate. This Impala likely has another '07 black Impala's VIN tag on it and will run around undetected unless it's used in a crime or similar and the forensic team discovers the hidden VIN elsewhere.