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NEWS OF THE WEIRD: LOVE AND THEFT EDITION

Bits and bytes of the bizarre and strange gathered from around the web so you don’t have to….Yer welcome!

 Woman’s Stolen 1964 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Was Returned 40 Years Later

According to Yahoo, Modesto Fleming had her C2 Corvette stolen back in 1976 while living in Anaheim, California. She thought her car was gone for good but was shocked when it was returned in Oct. 2016, 40 years later. 

At a car show, someone pointed out that the VIN of the 1964 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray didn’t belong to a Stingray. That VIN was assigned to a 1964 Impala. The discrepancy in the number was enough for a police officer to verify with the National Insurance Crime Bureau that the Stingray had been stolen years before. 

The officer who made the discovery said, “The number returned to a 1964 Chevy Corvette that was an unrecovered stolen vehicle out of Anaheim Police Department in Sept. 1976. I contacted Anaheim and advised them of the situation. They then located the victim from 1976, who is currently living in Arizona, and told her we had her car.”

The man who had the car when it was discovered to be stolen received it from his wife in 1987 as a present. His wife bought it from a dealership that later went out of business. 

Getting a stolen car like the 1964 Chevy Corvette back after 40 years is weird car news because most stolen vehicles are never recovered. Value Penguin reports that about 1 in 5 cars are eventually recovered. Unfortunately, a third of the lucky car owners who get their vehicles back have to deal with an average of $1,490 worth of damage. In 2018, it took about 11 days on average to recover 20% of stolen vehicles, and 12% of auto thefts resulted in an arrest. 

Source: 1 Woman’s Stolen 1964 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Was Returned 40 Years Later (motorbiscuit.com)

Luxury vehicles worth millions recovered in California

Autoblog recently reported on a successful raid on a car theft ring in California. Models included Mercedes-Benz models, including some that appear to be damaged, an older Bentley Continental GTa current-generation BMW X6, an Aston Martin Vantage, and an eighth-generation Chevrolet Corvette finished in a head-turning color called Rapid Blue. The combined value of the cars is an estimated $2.3 million.

The high-end, high-horsepower cars weren’t the only items seized during the raid. Police officers also found well over 400 marijuana plants and a Glock 26 subcompact handgun. One suspect was arrested during the operation, according to officials.

There is no word yet on what will happen to the cars. However, the California Highway Patrol urges anyone with information about this case (or anyone who believes that they have been a victim of a similar theft) to get in touch with an officer as soon as possible.

Source: California police recover stash of stolen luxury cars worth $2.3M (autoblog.com)

Woman’s Stolen Car Returned With Over 100 Love Letters From Strangers Inside

Hattie Gelhausen discovered that her car had been stolen from her home one day. Luckily for her, the police found it and returned it to her a week later.

According to local media, the car wasn’t in the same shape it had been when Gelhausen lost it. Instead, it was full of random items. “All kinds of random stuff, dog bowls, vases, nude drawings. It looks like our car was used in a string of smash and grabs and a joyride until it ran out of gas,” Gelhausen said. 

Among the items discovered: a large collection of love letters, many of them decades old.

It’s not clear who the owner of the letters might be. There are only a few clues, including the fact that they’re addressed to “Barbro” and something resembling “Pony.” The majority of the letters originated in London or Chelsea and are signed by someone named Keith.

Among the documents was a photo of an unidentified man the Atlanta resident speculates might be Keith himself. She finds the mysterious man intriguing and endearing, especially after reading so many of the love letters he might have written.

Gelhausen hopes that by getting the word out about her find, their original owner might eventually get them back. She figures that the person must care a great deal about them, given how many of them were saved for so many years. 

Gas Station In Wisconsin Sued By Competitors For Selling Gas Too Cheap

Motor 1 covered an interesting item from Waukesha, Wisconsin, a suburb of Milwaukee and home to Woodman’s Food Market. The store is part of a chain in the region that also has fuel stations, and it appears that some competitors aren’t happy about getting beat on price. According to a report from local media, BP and Shell stations nearby are allegedly suing Woodman’s for $80,000 each, citing a state law that says companies cannot sell goods below cost.

What is the cost exactly? A quick check on Gasbuddy.com shows Woodman’s selling regular gasoline for $3.59 as of the late afternoon on March 21. Other stations in the area are in the $3.75 to $3.99 range. The BP station is reportedly at $3.89 per gallon, while the Shell station across the road from Woodman’s is shown at $3.79 per gallon. It must be noted that Gasbuddy.com relies on reports from registered website users who post fuel prices with approximate times.

The media outlet claims to have over 200 pages of court documents relating to this case. The news outlet also mentions new filings from Woodman’s alleging the company is in compliance with the law, citing a Costco store just over six miles away as its competition. Another quick check at Gasbuddy shows a Costco in Pewaukee with a reported price of $3.49 per gallon.

Apparently, the court case isn’t merely based on recent events. According to Newsweek, the lawsuit allegedly covers 40 days in which the plaintiffs say the price at Woodman’s has been too low. Newsweek also states that Woodman’s has filed against the suit, seeking a dismissal.

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