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  • Found my stolen Vette can't get it back
  • Found my stolen Vette can't get it back
  • Found my stolen Vette can't get it back
  • Found my stolen Vette can't get it back

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  1. #16
    Member Huskerman's Avatar
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    Seems to me the issue needs to go back to Arkansas and to the courts who issued a title on this car in 93.....how did that happen? Statute of limitations...? Isn't there a VIN # on the frame of the car?
    I think the Judge who issued the new title and the State if he is no doubt gone is responsible given its new lease on life and title. I'd start there.......especially if the VIN# has not been altered.....the current owner will have to take issue and sue the State of Arkansas for titling a stolen vehicle.......I would be pissed and I would raise all kinds of hell about it and so should the current guy who is in possession of your old car.....those are my thoughts anyway.....

  2. #17
    Administrator Mac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huskerman View Post
    Seems to me the issue needs to go back to Arkansas and to the courts who issued a title on this car in 93.....how did that happen? Statute of limitations...? Isn't there a VIN # on the frame of the car?
    I think the Judge who issued the new title and the State if he is no doubt gone is responsible given its new lease on life and title. I'd start there.......especially if the VIN# has not been altered.....the current owner will have to take issue and sue the State of Arkansas for titling a stolen vehicle.......I would be pissed and I would raise all kinds of hell about it and so should the current guy who is in possession of your old car.....those are my thoughts anyway.....
    The only thing I've run into like this was years ago while working patrol. I got a call from the DMV when a guy brought in a Harley to be registered. The VIN was registered as stolen. Similarly, no insurance payout. It had been about 10 years. The original owner was notified. The guy who was trying to register it had a legitimate bill of sale. He bought it as a bare frame and built the bike of his dreams. Imagine his chagrin to find the bike was stolen.

    Long story short, the new builder recovered his funds from the business that sold him the bike, then made an arrangement with original owner who basically paid him the cost of the parts (luckily, the builder had all receipts) so the builder lost nothing but his time... and the original owner got a kickass custom Harley for very low cost.

    Mac
    Common sense is like deodorant. The folks who need it most never seem to use it and there's no polite way to tell them.



  3. #18
    Administrator Tom Bryant's Avatar
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    You said the frame number was found but no longer legible. When a number is stamped it compresses the molecules in the steel under the stamping. There is a chemical process that makes it possible to read a number on an engine block even if it has been ground or machined off. It should work on the frame also. You might talk to a metallurgist about it.

    Do you still have the title from when you had the car? Usually the oldest valid title that matches the VIN owns the car.


    Tom
    NCRS 1360.............SACC 2082.............C1 Registry..............L81 Registry
    1959 Chevrolet Corvette 1981 Chevrolet Corvette , 350 L81 automatic Frost Beige

  4. #19
    Found my stolen Vette can't get it back warren s's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 58bowty View Post
    So let's say someone steals YOUR Corvette and sells it to someone who does not know it's stolen, then that person can keep your car?? Really??. Not in my world. Whether it's a Corvette, TV, or your bicycle, it's stolen. If you have become a victim because you purchased stolen merchandise you do not go back to the original victim of the theft, you need to sue the person you bought it from. And for the record the car was stored in a garage and not insured so it does not belong to any insurance company and there is no mess, the car was traced through title records by the cops to it's current location.
    So the car had a clean title for 20 years, and your saying its stolen - and the current owner should have the car seized from him?
    There is a piece of the puzzle missing here. Did the current owner have the judge re-issue the title OR did the current owner buy a car from a seller with a clean title (to the best of his knowledge) to begin with?

  5. #20
    Administrator Tom Bryant's Avatar
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    In these cases the guy that looses the most is the current owner that bought the car in good faith and got a clean title with it. It hasn't been all that many years since there was an FBI national data base of stolen vehicles. Before that you could steal a car in one state and get it titled in another with something as simple as a signed bill of sale claiming a lost title. All you had to do was be convincing to the BMV lady you were talking to. Things have tightened up a lot over the last couple of decades. We still need to remember that up until 1960 Corvette VIN plates were attached with 2 pan head wood screws. The practice of buying a wrecked Corvette with a title and walking out of the junk yard with a title and a vin plate was well documented. Steal another Corvette of the same year and 2 screws later it was yours. Few knew of the frame stamping and since it is located where it is, it was hard to verify.

    Have you contacted the police that originally took the theft report to see if you can get the Corvette's info added to the FBI database? I'm assuming it was stolen before that was common practice. That could cause a lot of problems for the guy with the car and may cause someone to have to act on it.

    In this case it seems like a judge in Arkansas was convinced that the title was lost and the guy in possession of the car was the rightful owner. Who knows how that was done or even if the judge really cared at the time. It was just the next order of business to cross his desk that day. A faked bill of sale and a signed affidavit was probably all that was needed.

    Often in these cases the car passes through several hands and becomes a fully restored collector car before it is discovered. It may have been worth $1500. when it was stolen and now was last purchased for $80,000. The last buyer has no recourse but to go after the guy he bought it from and so on clear back to the thief, who probably has long since disappeared. Somewhere along this line of innocent buyers/sellers someone will have to pay back to his buyer and there will be nowhere for him to turn for restitution. Someone will loose thousands and each person will also have the legal obligation to prove they weren't the thief. What a mess.

    Tom

    p.s. I've been searching for a '57 Fuelie for years that was stolen from a friend without theft insurance back in '69. I keep hoping I'll run across an old picture or see the VIN someplace. More that likely it has been restored with a different VIN. If anyone even noticed the frame number didn't match they probably just finished the restoration, put the body back on without saying anything and sold it on down the road. Who knows, I might have seen the car several times.
    1959 Chevrolet Corvette 1981 Chevrolet Corvette , 350 L81 automatic Frost Beige

  6. #21
    Administrator Tom Bryant's Avatar
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    I just had an idea. Does the guy travel with the car or possibly show it out of state or in a different part of Tenn? I'd be watching him and follow him to a show someplace. Have your title and documents with you and contact the police in that jurisdiction. They would be much easier to talk to than the good old boys club where the guy lives. Many stolen Corvettes have been confiscated at shows. Let the court in that jurisdiction decide who is the owner. They would be less prejudiced. Oldest still valid title will/should take the car.

    Tom
    1959 Chevrolet Corvette 1981 Chevrolet Corvette , 350 L81 automatic Frost Beige

  7. #22
    Moderator KANE's Avatar
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    Lots of great replies from everyone here, 58bowty.

    We all want you to get your car back.







    Looking back on your earlier post... I think this may be the lynch pin as to why you're struggling with getting the car back:
    Quote Originally Posted by 58bowty
    VIN on frame was viewed but is no longer legible.
    I guess there isn't enough of the whole car to prove conclusively that it is yours in the state that it is in.

    Without a good frame number- to the State, the judges, and the departments of motor vehicles... it may just be a body that is left. Unless the car in it's entirety can be proven to be yours... seems like no one is in a rush to hand it over. I don't think anyone wants to dismantle the car and say "Here ya' go- here's the body. That's all that we can say conclusively is yours."


    For you, I do hope that it all works itself out. This is a real painful mess that, unlike wine, isn't getting better with age.
    1982 Chevrolet Corvette , 350 2k RPM Stall Converter + Updgraded Transmission + Governor Set For 5,450rpm Shifts 3.73 Code 42 Dark Mettalic Blue with a twist

  8. #23
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    Default That is just pathetic, I had my 1966 427 L/88 roadster stolen out of my driveway in Oakland Nj way back in 1971.

    Not a day goes by I don't think about my 66 427 L88 Roadster, Great way to combat auto theft. You know if that was some cops kids car they would go back build a case and sting them all up. I got $1000.00 for mine, pitiful when you think an all original may bring well over $100,000.00. I can say with certainty I would take somebody out if I ever found out who it was. Wishful thinking. Seems to me with the attitude these so called law enforcement people have "anything goes" maybe your Corvette could meet an firey demise, I mean after all if you can't rightfully get your rightful property back why should some scumbag be able to enjoy it. The paper trail was all phoney to bury the car in beaurocracy and paper for sure. Good luck with that.
    [/QUOTE]


  9. #24
    Member Huskerman's Avatar
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    Uh.....you mean your 67 L88........or your 66 L72.....I'm thinking....... Welcome to the CAC.......

  10. #25
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    Default uh,er.

    Quote Originally Posted by Huskerman View Post
    Uh.....you mean your 67 L88........or your 66 L72.....I'm thinking....... Welcome to the CAC.......
    uh, er, L72. I kicked it up in 69 with Alum. L88 heads 12:1's 488's out back and Holley 850 CFM. Never lost on the street but got lots of beer in my face, seems I always had a beer in my lap whenever a 429, 440 or 427 challenged my stock looking L 72. Bos 429's (Dual 4's) were the biggest slugs.

  11. #26
    Member Huskerman's Avatar
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    Sounds like a very fast Corvette....it has to be out there somewhere or at least pieces of it.......I hate thieves...........

  12. #27
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    Default Stolen Corvette

    Try contacting the National Automobile Theft Bureau (NATB)

  13. #28
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    It was stolen from you, you haven't been compensated,whosoever bought it subsequently was buying a stolen car, 'caveat emptor'; the car belongs to you. That is the law the whole civilised world over.......Roger.

  14. #29
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    I was just watching a video from the NICB (I thinks that's the National Insurance Crime Board) that has had involvement in recovering stolen vehicles. IMO it would be worth contacting them if there was a police report on record for the stolen vehicle. They've had videos on vehicles stolen 30+ years ago that were recovered and returned to their rightful owners. Sounds like you have enough info it could make a recovery possible and knowing where the vehicle is certainly would help out.

  15. #30
    Found my stolen Vette can't get it back koolaid117's Avatar
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    58bowty, do you have any updates for us?
    Life's too short to be unhappy.

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