The car in Maine, not the horse breed of the same name.

The Maine sporty car parked on the lot on US Rt 1 north of Houlton Maine caught the eye of a young lad. Clean cut, well mannered and telling the used car lot salesman Gerry, I’ll take it. How do you plan to do that? The answer, paying cash. Writing a check. Which he did and got the keys, after signing all important paperwork. Drove away.

Maine Crime, Is Pretty Low. 4th Lowest In Nation.
Shiretown Houlton Maine.

The deposit of the check to buy the Maine car opened up the can of worms.

As the sad tale unwinds. Spins and twists. When the car lot owner got back to town later that day from a buying trip down country, the first hiccup happened. Seems a visit to the local Maine bank to cash the check shows a problem. Little irregularity.

Last check in the book all junior had. The one and only. Used to “buy” the blue Mustang. Written on an account. But the signature is not the owner of the account. The grandson helped himself to just one of Grampy’s checks. The payment needed to kinda, sorta buy the car with the horse emblem on the body sides of blue.

The owner of the used car lots does not call the Maine State Police or Sheriff’s Department or local HPD men in true blue or wearing black. All headquartered in the border town loaded with law enforcement. Because he figures time is a wastin’. If he does not track down the car soon, there won’t be a car to hunt. Or when found it will be far away costly geographical out of state to pull back in, haul home. Or nothing of value is what he will end up finding. Maybe both happens if he does not get on his horse to hunt down the Mustang.

Far away and destroyed is worry. Or missing for good, never found might be best if insurance covers the loss. His big hit to eat as a chalk it up to experience mistake. A very expensive, major kick in the butt. That outshines the effort the report pen pushers would throw into the “find my car now” the car lot owner figures.

In small Maine towns, a couple phone calls and you know everything you need to make a plan.

Seems the grandson is headed to Biddeford Maine. The Maine used car lot owner scribbles down an address. Calls a buddy with a tow truck ramp to ask for a favor. He knows the guy from working in the Portland, Southern Maine area where he lived a few years back. In an earlier life with the wife, kiddos.

Sure enough, like in the repo cable television series, the ramp truck spies the car with the 14 day paper plate. When trolling in circles. Round the address given over the cell phone. Under the cover of darkness. Calls North, relays the “found it” news. What now? The order given to haul it in. Bag it and tag it. Cable the hook up to the frame. Tilt, hoist, reel it in like a prize fish. High tail it with the Mustang piggy back parked on the truck body up I-95. Giddy up go to Aroostook County. Drive it like you stole it to get clear of the junior car thief.

The grandson comes out during the loading and asks “what’s up?”

Lack of payment muttered. Means this little four wheel pony is headed north. Back to the used car lot corral display area cowboy. The grandson ten shades of red faced, steam out the ears mad. The car filled to the brim with gas, packed for an early heading out the next day. At the crack of dawn road trip planned. That the ramp truck just canceled. Made “null and void” stamped sideways appear across the best laid crooked plans.

Car comes back to its large missing tooth, parallel angled spot on the lot on busy US Rt 1. To resume the puppy dog at the pound sad look. Searching for an owner with the cash or financing to get the set of keys legally. The Mustang Ford car home again. All within the same day the hub bub, drama unfolds.

End of story? Not really.

Just warming up. The grandson comes home to Aroostook County, hitchhiking straight up Interstate 95. Cause no ride of his own that disappeared, evaporated. Goes to Gramp’s on Rt 212 in the Smyrna / Merrill Maine area. A fight, argument ensues. A knife is produced, waved, used to make a point and the sad long and short of it is, Grampy ends up dead.

The grandson with blood on his hands has another stop in mind and heads east to the Shiretown, Houlton Maine with the knife.

Looking for the used car lot owner who messed up, foiled his plans to get out of Vacationland in the fueled up Mustang. That he only got to slide behind the wheel long enough for a quick ride south to Biddeford, Maine. Until the yank back surprise. Now you see it, now you don’t presto chang-o car retrieval.

The police cornered the angry grandson with the cutting tool behind a series of potato houses on the Ludlow Road near Wally World. And just a half mile up the road, where the rightful owner of the Mustang lived, the visit with the knife never happened. About two decades ago and something to rehash during a slow news day. Or eating lunch at a local Maine diner counter stool. Shooting the breeze during lunch hour hook on the burlap feed bag. Listening to the story. About the crime, doing the time from the used car lot owner. About the one day when everything went horrible wrong that started out seemingly innocent, low key.

Maine is the 4th lowest crime state and when it does happen, it is definitely not the normal daily buzz of events.

Not like the day to day in an urban area with gangs, drive by shootings and all kinds of awful crimes being committed round the clock. Other stories from Maine car dealerships. They get stolen, abused, used, just not quite the way you think.

I’m Maine REALTOR Andrew Mooers, ME Broker
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