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    Thread: Dealership Apologizes for Having customer arrested

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    1. Member pcm84's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 06:27 AM #1
      Contract Law 101: Dealership apologizes for having customer arrested


      Chesapeake Virginia, May 7 2012,

      Man buys blue Chevrolet Traverse at Priority Chevrolet, takes
      it back and trades it for the same car, a black Traverse with more equipment. The dealership
      fails to pick up on the price difference. The contract is finalized and signed, reflecting the
      lower price of the original blue car
      .

      Next.. the dealership then realizes its mistake and has the customer arrested for theft.

      Police realize there is no case and drop the charges. Customer sues. Dealership apologizes.

      More to follow.


      According to the lawsuits, Sawyer test-drove a blue Chevrolet Traverse on May 7 but ultimately decided to buy a black one. He traded in his 2008 Saturn Vue, signed a promissory note and left in his new SUV.

      The next morning, Sawyer returned and asked to exchange the black Traverse for the blue one.

      The lawsuit claims Wib Davenport, a sales manager, agreed to the trade without discussing how much more the blue Traverse would cost. (Dealership vice president, Stacy) Cummings disputed that, saying Davenport told Sawyer it would cost about $5,500 more than the black one and that Sawyer orally agreed to the higher price.

      Regardless, the final contract Sawyer signed did not reflect the higher price, which Cummings said should have been in the area of $39,000. He blamed a clerical error.

      "We definitely made a mistake there. There is no doubt about it," said (Dealership owner, Dennis) Ellmer.

      After signing the contract - which listed a sale price of about $34,000 - Sawyer immediately left the dealership and returned with a cashier's check covering what he owed after dealer incentives and his trade-in.

      A week later, Sawyer came back from a vacation to find numerous voicemails and a letter from the dealership, the suit said. In a phone conversation, Davenport explained they had made a mistake on the contract and sold the car for too little. He asked Sawyer to return to the dealership and sign a new contract.

      The lawsuit claims Sawyer refused. Cummings said Sawyer initially agreed but never followed through.

      When Sawyer did not return to the dealership, Priority staff continued their attempts to contact him via phone, text message and hand-delivered letters. They eventually contacted police.

      On June 15, three Chesapeake police officers arrested Sawyer in his front yard and took him before a magistrate judge. He was released on bond after about four hours at the Chesapeake jail, the suit said.

      Commonwealth's Attorney Nancy Parr said her office dropped all charges Aug. 23 after speaking with representatives of the dealership and determining there was insufficient evidence to pursue the case.

      In an interview Tuesday, Ellmer and Cummings said their staff never reported the SUV stolen and never asked for Sawyer to be arrested. They said they called police only for help locating the SUV while they pursued the civil action.

      After speaking with police Wednesday, however, Ellmer said he'd learned one of his managers, Brad Anderson, had indeed said the SUV was stolen.

      Kelly O'Sullivan, a spokeswoman for the Chesapeake Police Department, said the officer told Anderson in advance he was going to secure a warrant for Sawyer's arrest.
      Last edited by pcm84; 09-28-2012 at 07:38 AM.

    2. 09-28-2012 06:39 AM #2
      That's hilarious, you go in and ask for new a new contract, they tell you to go **** yourself, they **** up on your behalf and they say you stole their vehicle, priceless...

      I have no idea why people hate buying cars, or dealing with sales people.
      Last edited by Vanilla_Coke; 09-28-2012 at 06:48 AM.
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    3. Member stascom's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 06:43 AM #3
      I hope they get sued out of business. I hate thieves, hasslers, and lairs.

    4. 09-28-2012 06:42 AM #4
      My question is, on what evidence and grounds did the police have to arrest this individual? Personally, I would work through this with the dealership just because it is the right thing to do morally, despite the fact he's probably not legally obligated. I would be less inclined to help though after they dealership got the police involved.

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      09-28-2012 07:18 AM #5
      Quote Originally Posted by Zanardi. View Post
      it is the right thing to do morally
      salesmen now operate under some moral code??? the bottom line is the only code they obey
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      Who cares if im wrong, its the internet.

    6. 09-28-2012 08:35 AM #6
      Quote Originally Posted by unleashedd View Post
      salesmen now operate under some moral code??? the bottom line is the only code they obey
      I speaking more about my conscience personally. I would prefer not to profit due to a typo; everyone makes mistakes.

    7. Member dopaz's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 08:41 AM #7
      In an interview Tuesday, Ellmer and Cummings said their staff never reported the SUV stolen and never asked for Sawyer to be arrested. They said they called police only for help locating the SUV while they pursued the civil action.

      After speaking with police Wednesday, however, Ellmer said he'd learned one of his managers, Brad Anderson, had indeed said the SUV was stolen.
      Is 'Making False Statements to Police' a crime in Virginia?

      Dealerships love to play the numbers game, it is fitting that the ineptitude of several employees (if they had actually been checking the contract before getting the customer to sign someone would have caught the mistake) cost them thousands.

    8. Member taymk2's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 08:42 AM #8
      omly in va ....smh

    9. 09-28-2012 02:09 PM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by Zanardi. View Post
      I speaking more about my conscience personally. I would prefer not to profit due to a typo; everyone makes mistakes.
      well, i guess you're a better person....to each their owni

      if its legal to upsell, its also legal to down sell

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      09-28-2012 02:25 PM #10
      Although the police were never involved, I did have a similar dispute years ago with a Ford dealership that resulted in my bringing the new car back to them.

      I go in late on a Saturday afternoon circa 1996 wanting to trade my year old Ford pickup (stupid mistake on my part) for a new Mustang GT. They tell me they can accurately estimate the payoff of my current vehicle based on the payment and time elapsed so they put that figure into the paperwork. We come to an agreement on sales price, trade-in value, fees, etc and I go to the finance guy. They offer what I know is too high of a rate so I say I want to go to my own bank on Monday.
      Dealer tells me to take the Mustang home even though I kind of didn't want too until everything was squared away but did anyway. Monday I contact the bank, loan is arranged and dealer will be funded on Tuesday. Get a call from dealer Tuesday telling me all's well so come in and pick up my copies of all paperwork.
      On Thursday, FIVE days after we wrote up the deal, and two days after it was funded, I get a call from the sales manager saying the payoff for my car was $175 more than they had estimated and they wanted me to bring in a check for that amount. I told him no, he continued to argue, so I told him I'd bring the car back. Got back to the dealer, saw him over in the corner office scowling, and my saleswoman took me out to the back lot in a golf cart to retrieve my truck. Some cars were going to have to be moved, so she left me there while she went back to get some porters and keys to help her. A few minutes later she came back and told me if I still wanted the Mustang, the manager had relented. End of story.
      This was totally their mistake and their policies. They should have never sent me home in a new car unless they were 100% sure of everything. They also could have verified the payoff first thing Monday morning and brought it up then and changed the deal. Instead, they sat on for FIVE days and then wanted to quibble over $175 on a $20K+ car, stupid. I in no way felt morally obligated to pay that extra amount.
      Houston, TX
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    11. Member mikegilbert's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 07:49 AM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by Zanardi. View Post
      My question is, on what evidence and grounds did the police have to arrest this individual? Personally, I would work through this with the dealership just because it is the right thing to do morally, despite the fact he's probably not legally obligated. I would be less inclined to help though after they dealership got the police involved.
      I'm curious about this as well. I'd push the police to file charges against the dealership for filing a false police report.
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    12. Member MatchStick's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 08:24 AM #12
      even if they "apologized" I'd proceed with my lawsuit against them. ruthlessly.

    13. Member FACTORYBOOST's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 08:45 AM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by MatchStick View Post
      even if they "apologized" I'd proceed with my lawsuit against them. ruthlessly.
      Agreed, they had you arrested in your own front yard in front of your neighbors and family. They can apologize all they want, but it still doesn't change the fact that you were arrested and held for 4 hours.
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      09-28-2012 09:22 AM #14
      Isn't making a false police report a crime? The dealer lackey who called the police ought to be arrested and charged. Let him rot in a cell.

    15. Member troze1200's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 01:30 PM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by FACTORYBOOST View Post
      Agreed, they had you arrested in your own front yard in front of your neighbors and family. They can apologize all they want, but it still doesn't change the fact that you were arrested and held for 4 hours.
      Let's not forget this owner also most likely lost his job and will pay processing and court fees.

    16. Geriatric Member BRealistic's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 09:24 AM #16
      Quote Originally Posted by Zanardi. View Post
      My question is, on what evidence and grounds did the police have to arrest this individual? Personally, I would work through this with the dealership just because it is the right thing to do morally, despite the fact he's probably not legally obligated. I would be less inclined to help though after they dealership got the police involved.
      As was shown by the robo-foreclosures,.the police assume a business has already done due diligence before calling the police for assistance, so if the accused claims.false arrest they just assume they are lying (because most criminals initially claim innocence). But obviously that is not the case anymore.

      And somebody mentioned filing a false police report.
      I doubt the buyer.cares about criminal charges against the probably now fired salesman.
      Civil court ahead full speed!
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    17. Geriatric Member ATL_Av8r's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 09:29 AM #17
      Lock him up for frivolous lawsuits. And make the dealer sell Mitsubishis for their transgressions.
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      09-28-2012 09:30 AM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by BRealistic View Post
      And somebody mentioned filing a false police report.
      I doubt the buyer.cares about criminal charges against the probably now fired salesman.
      Civil court ahead full speed!
      I wouldn't care either if I had my sights set on $2M. But the DA should be proactive in charging the assclowns who thought it was okay to use the police as a shake-down.

      Quote Originally Posted by ATL_Av8r View Post
      Lock him up for frivolous lawsuits. And make the dealer sell Mitsubishis for their transgressions.
      Quote Originally Posted by ATL_Av8r View Post
      sell Mitsubishis
      That's a thing?

    19. Member BluMagic's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 09:47 AM #19
      40k for a chevy traverse is theft
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      09-28-2012 09:53 AM #20
      Quote Originally Posted by BluMagic View Post
      40k for a chevy traverse is theft
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    21. Member MCTB's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 08:23 AM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by BluMagic View Post
      40k for a chevy traverse is theft
      I dont know about that. Chevys are getting pretty nice.




      I had to call the cops one time. I went in to a Jeep dealer to look at Wranglers. I was trading in my Audi. It was only going to take "30 mins" to appraise. I went on a drive and came back and after 40 minutes, I began asking for my key. They said they wouldnt give them to me until "we" could make a deal. A deal was not going to happen so I kept asking. After just shy of an hour, I asked one more time nicely. They said they could not find them. I told them I was going to call the police and the salesman balked. I reached across in front of him, picked up his phone and dialed 911. By the time I punched the last 1, the salesman was out of the office and running to the manager who "found" my key in his pocket. I told them where they could stick it, took the key and walked out. As I walked out, a cruiser showed up to the place responding to the call. That dealer doesnt exist anymore.
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      09-28-2012 09:59 AM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by kimilein View Post
      I wouldn't care either if I had my sights set on $2M. But the DA should be proactive in charging the assclowns who thought it was okay to use the police as a shake-down.
      If they had a recurring problem with businesses filing false police reports,.then I could see
      DA thinking it was worth the court time to charge them.
      But for one case? IDK. And then you have to prove the salesman knowingly filed a false police report.
      The defense lawyer could easily cast a reasonable doubt to the charge of intentionally filing a false report with so many people involved.
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    23. Member freedomgli's Avatar
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      09-28-2012 10:07 AM #23
      Way to treat a customer....

      A fat cash settlement would be the only thing that could erase my memory of this apparent injustice if I was in the customer's shoes.

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      09-28-2012 10:13 AM #24
      In 2002 or so, I was working at a VW dealer where the new sales manager sold a Passat GLX 4Motion for $18K....in reality, the customer had a legal contract and could've told the sales manager to GTFO.
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      09-28-2012 10:16 AM #25
      Quote Originally Posted by MRVW00 View Post
      In 2002 or so, I was working at a VW dealer where the new sales manager sold a Passat GLX 4Motion for $18K....in reality, the customer had a legal contract and could've told the sales manager to GTFO.
      Dealerships: contracts are binding if we like them. They're rubbish if we don't.

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