What Are The Car Crimes You Can Tell Us About?

Illustration for article titled What Are The Car Crimes You Can Tell Us About?
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There was that time when a group of unnamed website staffers sitting around a Detroit Airbnb got to talking and I learned that almost everybody else in the world steals a lot more than I do, and I’m kind of a dweeb. Or at least they “used to.” But none of that even begins to cover all the car crime.

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We all have that “friend” who “once” did “something crazy” as a “teenager,” which often is followed by a nearly unbelievable tale of friendship, hardship, pain, war, love, drugs, alcohol and usually, cars.

Maybe one of my friends hid from highway patrolmen with the lights off in some stranger’s driveway on some unknown road a few times. Maybe more than a few times. Maybe this friend also potentially has an outstanding camera ticket in a European nation he’s not sure he ever took care of, too.

To be honest, all of my car crimes are, unfortunately, boring and on the record. The crimes not on the record were in my pre-car era. My neighborhood friends and I terrorized my neighborhood with dirtbikes, lacking respect for property boundaries. And we used to combine fireworks in bespoke containers to make... bigger fireworks, we’ll say.

By the time I had a car of my own to use whenever, I also had a job and school, so I wasn’t exactly out street racing my 2007 Honda Civic Si Coupe. And then driving became my job, something I’d like to keep.

Maybe the most exciting story I’ve heard came from a friend who works for a major car company, who once told me about a time out street racing as a juvenile. They dared each other to jump some train tracks, totaled his father’s car, left it on the side of the road and tried to claim it’d been stolen. (The friend was apparently very injured and swollen the next day so that didn’t sell.)

We are not the police. So go ahead and tell us the car crimes you can talk about...and not the ones a lawyer may advise you not to talk about. Maybe tell us about the alleged crimes your “friend” may have naively bent, or whatever. I am not a lawyer.

Reviews Editor, Jalopnik

DISCUSSION

One time, back when I was a cop, I stopped this crime ring that was boosting DVD players and car stereos. Long story short, I wound up JOINING the group family and traveling the world committing/stopping crimes. Then I had a kid and they stopped inviting me to the jobs. Kids ruin everything.