Wednesday, April 16 2014 10:54 PM EDT2014-04-17 02:54:16 GMT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Louisville tow truck driver has hooked himself to a load of trouble.
Daniel Mason is being held on $1,500 bond after pleading not guilty to five charges of receiving stolen property.
According to police, Mason was a tow truck driver who had gone rogue; using his boss's truck to swipe cars and then sell them for scrap.
Rob Streander was one of the victims.
"I just turned my head over and looked and didn't see my car. So, it was gone," he said.
The next time Streander saw his car, it had been badly damaged. The car had been sold to a local scrap yard.
"When he scrapped the vehicle, they didn't know it was stolen at the time. So, they just did what they did with every other scrapped car and sat another car on it," he said.
Police say the man responsible is 39-year-old Daniel Mason. They say Mason used a truck belonging to his employer, Coffey's Towing, to illegally snatch Streander's car and sell it for scrap.
"You just don't expect it to happen. Now I'm out a bunch of money, a bunch of time and a bunch of repairs I've done to the car. I don't know what to do about it," said Streander.
The owner of the tow truck company says he had no idea what his employee was allegedly doing. In fact, he says he's also a victim in this case.
"It's another hurdle we have to overcome to try to earn the public's trust," said Keith Coffey.
Coffee says he helped police identify Mason from grainy surveillance video that captured the theft.
"It was a one-of-a-kind wrecker in the fleet. So, all I had to do was call and find out who was in that truck. I already kind of suspected," he said.
And it apparently wasn't the first time. Mason is facing a total of five charges of receiving stolen property.
"The last few years, scrap's been incredibly high. That kind of thing's going to happen. But it's sad, really. It's unfortunate. Why anybody would think he could get away with that, I have no idea," said Coffey.
Meantime, Streander's car is good for nothing but scrap.
"I just hope that he doesn't get back out on the streets, or at least no one hires him as a tow truck driver and give him a truck to take home," he said.
Mason did turn himself in yesterday afternoon.
He has a arrest record going back to 2003. In fact, he was guilty of the same charge of receiving stolen property last year.
Now, he's also unemployed. Coffey says Mason has been fired.