A La Clery woman is now without a vehicle after it was allegedly stripped and sold by her mechanic about four month ago.
According to Misty Floyd, what started out as a simple problem under the hood of her Toyota Rav-4 vehicle, has now become a living nightmare.
The distraught woman related her story to St. Lucia News Online (SNO) today, stating that the issue first began in May of this year when her vehicle stalled on the Morne in Castries and began overheating.
At that point, she explained that an acquaintance of hers recommended a mechanic to assist her with the vehicle.
“I made contact with him and he came to check the vehicle on the Morne where it had stopped and told me that it was a minor issue and that he knew of a place to source the part needed to fix the problem,” she added.
Floyd said she then placed her vehicle in the care of the mechanic, who then towed her vehicle to his workshop in Dierre Fort, on the Morne to commence work.
The La Clery woman said during a period of two weeks, she had given the mechanic a total of EC$900 to complete works on her vehicle and to return it to her.
However, the mechanic called to inform her that the engine need to be repaired and he was going to look in to it. She agreed.
“At that point, through a close relative, I provided him with all the parts needed to commence works on the engine. The sparks, the plugs and the engine oil,” she told SNO.
Under the assumption that engine works require a lengthier period, Floyd said it did not dawn on her, when time went by, that something was wrong.
Attempts to contact the mechanic became a challenge after that, the La Clery woman said. She explained that the issue continued well into the August, and despite attempts to locate the mechanic, the search remained futile.
“When we finally found him he gave us some cock and bull story saying that someone had crashed their vehicle with a Rav-4, so he managed to finally get an engine and he would have installed it; that’s what he told me,” she related to SNO.
Floyd said at that point she had expressed disgust and had asked him to immediately return the vehicle to her regardless of what was left to do, but the vehicle was never returned.
“Eventually I took matters into my own hand and I went up to where he lives, and I am there speaking to the guy’s brother and was told that he (the mechanic) had been in and out of jail for stripping peoples vehicle and selling it for parts,” Floyd told SNO.
Floyd said when she opened the vehicle, the transmission, the engine, the rear axle, the cable, among other parts, were missing.
“The vehicle was missing so many parts that it was a bare shell,” she added.
Floyd said she then contacted the police to make a report, but was told by the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) that it was a civil matter and nothing can be done about the issue. Floyd was later advised to seek the assistance of the vehicle and patrol authorities.
However, she stated that they can only look into the matter if they know of the mechanic’s whereabouts, but to date, she has not been able to locate him.
“He is not at the address I knew, where he used to work and live, so I was not able to assist the police in locating him.”
Floyd said she feels victimised, but is hopeful she can receive some justice.