A wheelchair-bound Manteca man – a former carpenter – lost his car to thieves who answered a “car for sale” ad on Craigslist Tuesday afternoon.
A white man in his late 20s to early 30s along with a black woman about the same age walked up to the man’s door in the 1000 block of Ridgecrest at about 4 p.m. asking to see the car, Manteca Police said. After looking it over at length, they asked to take it on a test drive.
Sgt. Ralph Colin said the thieves drove off in the 1994 dark green Honda Civic never to be seen again. When the couple called on the phone they said they were coming from Elk Grove, however they reportedly walked up to the home with no obvious form of transportation.
Sgt. Colin is asking the public to be alert to the missing vehicle and to call the Manteca Police Department if it is sighted. The license number is 5ZBP547. The man had no facial hair, stood about 5-foot-10 and was of stock build with a large tattoo on the right side of his neck. He wore a black beanie with a light shirt and blue jeans.
The woman was described as being heavy set, standing about 5-foot-5 and wearing a black dress.
The owner of the car became wheelchair bound some nine years ago after falling from the second story of a house under construction. “That someone would take advantage of a person like me,” he said, makes him feel bad.
He was the latest among Craigslist advertisers being victimized. There has been a rash of car-related thefts in the Bay Area involving Craigslist. They run the gamut from a seller’s car being stolen to those coming to buy a car with cash being robbed instead.
There is also an ongoing murder investigation in the Midwest involving at least two victims who responded to ads seeking work who were instead robbed and killed.
South County Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest of the suspects and the return of the vehicle. Callers may call at 823-4636 to receive the reward and remain anonymous.