Repo Man Takes NYPD Cop’s Car, Gets Arrested on Felony Charge

It was a tough day at work for Jose Rodriguez last week, when he drove by a Nissan Altima that showed up in his logs as having missed 3 payments. A simple repossession operation landed him in jail with a felony charge, which was then mysteriously reduced to a misdemeanor.
NYPD cop's Nissan Altima that had to be repossessed for 3 missed payments 11 photos
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Rodriguez tells Spectrum News NY1 that the Nissan Altima showed up in his logs after the owner missed 3 payments on it. He had a court order for it, so he proceeded to logging the car and loading it on his flatbed.

Then, as he was about to pull out and head to headquarters, he was boxed in by a pickup that was driven by an off-duty sergeant from the NYPD. The owner of the Altima also showed up and it turns out that he too was a cop. The cop offered Rodriguez to make all the back payments on the spot, but the tow truck driver apologized, saying the matter was out of his hands: once a car is logged in and loaded, it’s officially the bank’s property.

And that’s when the off-duty cops proceeded to arrest Rodriguez. They took his cameras and his phone and laptop, got into the Altima and drove off. Another cop cuffed Rodriguez and hauled him to the station, where he’d spent the next 20 hours on a felony charge.

Rodriguez was initially charged with possession of stolen property, but the charge mysteriously disappeared when he was arraigned: this time, he was charged with falsifying documents and possession of police scanners, which are misdemeanors. He still maintains he’s innocent.

“The only reason why this happened was because this was a police officer's car. That's the only reason why,”
he says for the media outlet. Rodriguez has lawyered up and plans to sue the NYPD.

Contacted for comment, the NYPD says that an investigation was launched after “a male victim stated to police that an unlicensed tow truck was in possession of his vehicle without authorization.” They don’t even acknowledge that the victim was a police officer.
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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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