Stolen, then stuck, car costs owner's dad $2,000

By Jayson Jacoby July 15, 2013 09:44 am

By Jayson Jacoby

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Pat Mayo thought the recent story in the Herald about four people arrested after they stole a car in Kansas and then got it stuck on a muddy Baker County backroad was pretty funny except for one thing: The $2,000 bill he got saddled with.

Mayo’s daughter, Tara Mayo, owns the 2007 Pontiac Vibe that was recovered in June 27 in the woods southwest of Unity.

Police arrested David Jeffery Hernandez, 32, of Springfield, Mo., Nicholas A. Moore, 27, of Richmond, Mo., Shawna Michelle Patrom, 22, of Springfield, Mo., and Shaniah Renee Neiderhauser, 18, of Sparta, Mo.

Pat Mayo said his daughter, who’s 29, lives with her aunt, who is Pat Mayo’s sister.

Their home is in Tonganoxie, Kan., a small town between Lawrence, Kan., and Kansas City, Kan.

One night about a week before the arrest in Baker County, Tara Mayo and her aunt were asleep when two people entered their home and stole cash items and several items, including the keys to the Vibe.

When the pair awoke they called police to report the theft, Pat Mayo said.

When he learned a week later that his daughter’s car had been recovered in Oregon, he set about making arrangements to have it returned.

Pat Mayo said his initial plan was to fly to Boise, rent a car to drive to Baker City, and then drive the Pontiac back to Kansas.

Eventually, though, he decided to hire a company to haul the car for him.

The total bill came to about $2,000 — a goodly sum, but worth it for a car that has been quite dependable, he said.

Not quite as troubling — though not a pleasant task, either — was cleaning the Pontiac before returning it to his daughter.

“Opening the car was like opening a garbage can,” Pat Mayo said.

He said his amusement, at reading the Herald’s story, which documented how the four accused car thieves came to police attention because the two men called 9-1-1 and claimed they had been hitchhiking and gotten lost, was informed in part by his profession.

He works as a nurse at the jail in Lawrence.

Mayo said he has seen firsthand that some people who end up in jail don’t always exhibit the keenest judgment.

“I work with people like this every day,” he said.