Cornwall woman accidentally steals car from Walmart parking lot

Thursday, 12 Jul, 2018

"My initial thought was, 'I'm going to have to find out where she got this vehicle from, or my God, how am I going to put cuffs on this elderly female, '" the Cornwall Community Police Service officer told As It Happens guest host Rosemary Barton.

The auto started right up and she drove off because the vehicle, much like her rental did not use a key to start the auto, but a key fob. After getting the auto, she stopped off at a nearby Walmart to shop, before returning to the parking lot, hopping in a black vehicle and driving home.

MacRae says it all started when the woman rented a black Nissan Sentra from the Enterprise Rent-A-Car in Cornwall on Saturday, June 23.

Both cars use a key fob, which doesn't require a key to start the auto. After all, she had no inkling she'd stolen the vehicle she was driving. And she didn't realize her mistake for another two weeks.

It was the manager at the vehicle rental company who finally pieced together what had happened.

It can happen out there, amid life's hustle and bustle, when you are in a rush and your mind is in a million different places, and you park your auto, for instance, in an underground parking lot, and return some time later, after running an errand, and realize you have no recollection as to where you actually parked the vehicle in the first place.

By now the manager was "slightly confused", police say.

And it wasn't until this past weekend when the woman returned the vehicle to the same auto rental company that the manager pieced the entire situation together and realized what had happened. Police say she caused confusion when she tried to drop of an Infiniti - not the Nissan she originally rented. The owner of the auto left his fob in the vehicle, enabling the woman to drive away. For one, it was messy when she picked it up - and there was a set of golf clubs in the trunk. "And she was giving the manager the business on renting her a dirty vehicle", MacKay said.

MacKay said he has been an officer for 11 years and has never experienced anything like this, but is glad that it had a happy ending. The owner said he had ducked into Walmart and returned to find his auto missing from the parking lot, according to police.

The Infiniti's owner reported his SUV stolen and not long after showed up to the same Enterprise to rent a loaner to replace it temporarily.

The manager called the cops, but MacKay refused to arrest the woman.