WINTER HAVEN, Fla. — A Florida woman is accused of stealing a car from a dealership under the pretense of taking a test drive, authorities said.
Shonteria Nicole Story, 34, of Auburndale, was charged with grand theft, according to Polk County Sheriff’s Office online booking records.
According to the Winter Haven Police Department, Story visited the Chevy Center in Winter Haven on Monday evening, saying she wanted to buy a car. Story had been emailing an associate at the dealership and arranged the visit, the newspaper reported.
Story was shown a 2021 Chevrolet Equinox. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, the dealership does not allow employees to ride with customers, WTVT reported.
The employee made a copy of Story’s driver’s license and told her to take a short test drive.
“You know where this is going, right?” the Winter Haven police wrote in a news release.
After 90 minutes, the associate tried to call Story but could not make contact, according to the release. The employee then called police “since it was obvious Story was not returning,” police said in the news release.
The vehicle was equipped with OnStar, a GPS navigation system, which allowed it to be tracked to a location in Bartow, The Ledger of Lakeland reported. A Polk County Sheriff’s deputy assisted in locating the vehicle, which contained Story’s possessions, the news release said. The dealer license tag had been removed.
“It was ‘the ole test drive a car and not return it’ trick, but technology spoiled those plans,” Winter Haven police said. “OnStar is a beautiful thing.”
Story was booked into the Polk County Jail, WTSP reported.