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Tulsa police seize woman's new car after telling her it was stolen

Posted at 6:23 PM, Apr 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-19 11:16:06-04

TULSA, Okla. — A Tulsa woman says police seized her car just weeks after she bought it saying it had been stolen. She bought it from a used-car dealership in Tulsa.

Last month, Lisa Miller says she was cooking breakfast for her grandchildren when police knocked on her door to tell her the car she had recently purchased was a stolen car. Police told her it had been reported stolen and it had to be returned to its original owner.

“I told them no. I don’t have a stolen vehicle in my yard, just purchased this vehicle,” Miller said.

Miller used her tax refund check to purchase a Denali SUV from the Hiz and Herz used-car dealership on East Apache. She still has the receipt.

Tulsa police told 2 News that sometimes small dealerships will unknowingly purchase a stolen vehicle and then resell it.

“You then have a Good Samaritan, go and purchase a car, thinking it’s legit and legal, and then come back to find the car is stolen," Tulsa Police Lt. Chase Calhoun said. "The car is then taken from them because it has to be returned to the lawful owner."

Small dealerships are not required to verify if the car is stolen but Calhoun says it's good business practice. One way you can protect yourself is by checking the VIN number with the National Insurance Crime Bureau.

“Oftentimes, the dealership may not have any knowledge that the car is actually stolen,” Calhoun said.

2 News reached out to the dealership and they say they are also victims. Miller says she doesn't have the money to buy another car right now and is stuck with the replacement.

To learn more about the National Insurance Crime Bureau, CLICK HERE.

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