FEDERAL HEIGHTS, Colo. -- Owners of a Federal Heights car wash reached out to the Problem Solvers after two men took their car during a busy day last week, and it appears to be just the latest in a bold string of thefts.
The Wash Me Klean Car Wash makes it clear that while customers are washing, cameras are watching.
“Honestly, I told my husband he was camera crazy because he wanted so many cameras,” said owner, Patty McDougall.
She says her opinion was always based on a simple belief.
“I have great, awesome customers,” McDougall said.
But last week two customers preyed on her belief.
“This is the first time we’ve ever had a problem with anybody,” said April McDougall, Patty's daughter.
April McDougall admits she was shocked when her Mom’s 2014 Lincoln MKZ disappeared from the parking lot last Friday afternoon, but her jaw dropped when the cameras revealed how.
“He noticed our door was cracked," April McDougall said.
The video showed a regular customer who appeared to be getting change to wash his red Dodge pickup, when Patty McDougall passed by him on her way to the office/pump room.
“I even said hi to him as I came in and out of the pump room.”
The video shows that after Patty leaves, the door doesn’t latch. Soon after, the man comes back into view, enters the room and steals her keys. On his way back to his truck, he stops and ties his shoes, while glancing back to locate Patty McDougall, who was painting on the other side of the building.
The man and his accomplice then drive over to Patty McDougall's car and he can be seen taking her purse from the front seat. A few minutes later the two return and then drive off in her car.
“They are regular customers and then they come and rip us off,” April McDougall said.
And the McDougalls now know they are not alone. Federal Heights police told them that the red Dodge Ram pickup was also stolen, and a few days after posting a flyer they started getting calls.
“Now they’re using our car to steal other people’s cars,” April McDougall said. "They’re just stealing car after car and they’re driving them around like they own them.”
“I just want them caught and I want my car back,” Patty McDougall said.
Patty hopes those cameras and her remaining good customers can help with that.
The stolen Lincoln MKZ had the license plate number QHC-449, but the McDougalls believe the plate has been replaced with a stolen one because the Dodge Ram also had a stolen plate.
The McDougalls say they have seen the red Dodge Ram around the neighborhood since the theft, but they say the suspects got away before police could arrive.
“Just turn the guys in," McDougall said. “Call the police, tell them it’s right here.”AlertMe