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Bakersfield woman paying the price for having her vehicle stolen

Posted at 5:28 PM, Jun 13, 2024

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Sharon Terrell recently had her car stolen from her gym's parking lot. After her vehicle was located and returned to her, though, she was left with even more questions. Not about the thieves, though.

  • While having your car stolen may not be the fault of a driver, the inquired costs can become extensive.
  • CEO of Omega Insurance Fred Prince said comprehensive coverage can help pay those fees but for those who can't afford an extensive plan they may need to pay close attention to their bill.

Sharon Terrell recently had her car stolen from her gym's parking lot. After her vehicle was located and returned to her, though, she was left with even more questions. Not about the thieves, though.

"When I balked at how much the bill was, they said they didn't set the price,” Terrell said.

Terrell was looking at a $524 bill for the towing and impounding of her car after it was stolen. Since she didn't want the price to get any higher, she paid it to get her vehicle out of the lot, then went to the Sheriff's Office to understand why the cost had been so high.

"They finally got back to me and told me that the towing company owed me $238,” Terrell said. “That I should be receiving a check.”

That wasn't the end of her troubles. Terrell said when she called the company back her call wouldn't go through.

Terrell said she felt she was being taken advantage of for not having comprehensive insurance to cover the costs.

CEO of Omega Insurance Fred Prince said while towing rates are regulated, there could be certain requirements or oversights that cause your bill to increase.

"Even if it's there for an hour, you're going to be charged for an entire day. There's also a minimum number of days, so you're not going to be able to pick it up same day,” Prince said.

While having your car stolen may not be the fault of a driver, the inquired costs can become extensive. Prince said comprehensive coverage can help pay those fees but for those who can't afford an extensive plan they may need to pay close attention to their bill.

"You will definitely want to get an itemized bill,” he said. “Because there are times when you may see some fees that should not be there and you'll want those fees to be removed."

In Terrell's case, pursuing answers did end up getting some of her money back.

"You have to fight so hard,” she said. “It’s stressful.”

Which is why Prince encourages anyone with questions about the cost of their tow not to give up.


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