Tow trucks stealing cars in DC

Car thieves driving tow trucks have stolen at least three cars in D.C. since December and there may be additional cases.

FOX 5 has asked D.C. police for information on how many cases have been reported to them, but a spokesperson said investigators are still looking into it.

A woman living in Southeast said her parents’ car was stolen in December 2021 while they were visiting from Ohio.

Joy Douglas said the black Camry was parked near her home on Malcolm X Avenue. She said she and her parents had gone out that morning and then returned to her house before noon.

"(We) noticed when we looked out the window that the car was missing," Douglas said.

Ring camera footage shows an unmarked black tow truck parked close by and a man standing near the car.

The footage doesn’t record nonstop, so there’s no shot of the tow truck moving the car, but the police report notes the car was taken by a "tow truck with no identifiers." 

Police said the car has not been recovered, and no arrests have been made.

"It’s terrible," Douglas said. "You hate that for your parents. You hate that for anyone, but especially your parents. To come into your city, to your home, and have that happen to them, it really just hurts my heart, and it hurts me for everybody else this is happening to."

A little more than two months after her parents’ car was stolen, a Georgetown woman’s Corvette was wheeled away as well.

"It can happen to anybody in the blink of an eye," Jaclyn Baker told FOX 5.

Baker said the car, taken from Olive Street, was later recovered in Anacostia, but police told her someone had been shot and killed inside.

These older cases came to light after a rogue tow truck was caught on camera stealing a car in Southeast a little over a week ago.

Lyndon Bilal’s new hybrid Honda Accord was gone in less than two minutes. It was parked in front of his home on Martin Luther King Avenue.

READ MORE: DC man's car stolen by tow truck outside his home

"I was hurt, but nothing I could do about it," Bilal said.

Douglas said seeing those cases on the news brought back the feelings from when it happened to her family.

"I’m just angry. I really wanted to do this and speak to you because I want neighbors to just be on the lookout," Douglas said.

A few neighbors told Douglas on the Nextdoor app that their cars were also stolen by a tow truck.

A spokeswoman for D.C. police said Tuesday: "We are working with our District Detectives Office’s to conduct further research to see if there are any other reported cases and their details."