The window was forced down. My driver window regulator that I got at the junk yard needed to be adjusted some more, I was in a hurry when I put it in. The thief just jammed a random toyota key in the ignition and forced it, it went. The key is still jammed in there. Then they just hopped on I-25, a few exits down.
Metal Movers have fradulent documents they were given. They are now victims too. When I showed up, I expected trouble, and I was upset to find my truck as it was. I can say this much for sure, they were very sympathetic, and helpfull. They did every thing I asked, to make it right. Including a free tow back to my shop lot.
I cannot imagine it would be possible for many to be as lucky as I was. If it were not for a very sharp guy name Charlie who scraps cars using Craigslist for leads, I would be out big time. This guy was at home browsing CL, when he saw my stolen ad, he goes all the way back to the yard, calls me, helps me ID it. I went and met him to say thank you. He has 3 very nice, drivable trucks fror sale under $1000 including one with a 454. and if anybody wants to get rid of a junk car, please use this guy. I got his phone number if anyone wants.
How stripped was it? Seems to me if it was an opportunity theft for parts that they would be interested in good sheet metal, too. At least you know, some of the other guys never found their trucks. It's also curious to me that Metal Movers wouldn't have a VIN check for stolen vehicles similar to what pawn shops have to do.
Just the axles completely stripped to get the diffs. Sawzall looks to have been the tool of choice, and all bearings and hardware was strewn in the dirt. The motor was left running, and a customer actually showed up to purchase it while i was waiting by my truck. No body damage, but after the motor was pulled, it was to be crushed before lunchtime. Nobody cared about the body.
Not much window of opprotunity to recover a stolen vehicle at a crusher. After a few days, one would be searching for parts. Like the huge warehouse they have, with really nice tires. I saw a full, nice set of BFG A/T's 33 12.5 15's, for example. Who scraps that?
What did the police have to say about that?
Basically, they told me to be very care full, and that I was very lucky.
Metal Movers has a huge facility and employs over 20 people. I assumed things were shady at first. I saw their entire facility while I was there, including the church inside where they have televised services, and their community food bank. The move a lot of cars and they move them quick, that is how it works down there. Nobody is perfect, and some mistakes seem like they have tragic outcomes, but people are more important then cars. It is easy to make assumptions about what happened, but they were all very professional to me, and they made it right. I would encourage anybody to go down there if they have parts or used tires for anything you need. They run an open business and it is a very learning expireince if nothing else.