Classic Cars Recovered Following Storage Unit Theft

By: Alicia Myers Email
By: Alicia Myers Email

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Monday, January 24, 2011

Thousands of dollars worth of stolen items have been returned to their owners, including two classic cars.

It was all stolen last week, from the Storage System facility in Derby.

"He made the comment, he said, 'Brace yourself.' I knew at that point, it wasn't going to be good when I got to see it again," Jay Shepherd, owner of 1927 Model T Coupe Hot Rod, said of the Derby police officer's words to him after recovering his vehicle.

Six days after Shepherd's Model T was stolen, Derby Police located it near S. Broadway and 95th Street.

Shepherd says he bought the car about four years ago, and spent a year-and-a-half restoring it.

One week, and $10,000 worth of damage later, Shepherd cannot believe what the Model T endured.

"What really irritates me, is people who have never spent the time, the money, the effort it takes to go into one of these cars, and they can just do it with no thought whatsoever," said Shepherd.

Rodney Wachholtz's 1965 Chevelle Malibu was stolen the same day.

Late last week, police found it in Sedgwick County.

"That lead them to serving a search warrant that night at a suspect's house. We've recovered a few items that victims had noted were taken out of the storage units on that Monday," said Lt. Jimmy Queen, Derby Police.

One suspect was arrested. He could be responsible for taking dozens of items from several storage clients, including the windows, carburetor and gas tank from Shepherd's Model T, and leaving his custom paint job covered in spray paint.

"It wasn't a perfect car by any stretch of the imagination, but it was mine, and I built it," said Shepherd. "It's bad, but we can put it back together."

Shepherd says with the help of good friends, he hopes to have his Model T back together by Summer.

The theft case will be presented to the District Attorney's Office Tuesday. The name and age of the man arrested has not been released.

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