Lakeland woman buys car through online app, discovers it was stolen

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LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA) – Sharon Sanchez thought she had found the perfect car on the popular online market place, Letgo.

But the only thing she ended up letting go was her money. It turns out the car was stolen.

Sanchez forked over $4,700 for the 2017 Chevy Spark. She said the seller explained the low price by saying he needed to raise money quickly for his ill grandmother.

“The man was really nice. My niece was there and my mom was there. We didn’t suspect nothing,” she said. “I felt really bad for the man because of his grandmother. And I thought, ‘We’ll help him, and he’s helping me.’ But that’s not the case.”

Sanchez said she was given a title and bill of sale that looked legit. But when she took her paperwork to the DMV to register the car in her name, she was in for a big surprise.

She learned that a Tampa Honda dealership was looking for the car. they had reported that a buyer stopped paying, and they were trying to take possession.

“I wanted to throw up,” Sanchez said.

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office is investigating this incident.

Sanchez hopes her expensive lesson is a warning to others who are looking for a used car.

She said she learned to research the history of a vehicle before buying. If she had searched for the cars VIN, for example, she would have found that the person listed as the owner on the title she was provided, was not the owner.

To check the VIN of a car, visit the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles’ website.

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