Apple AirTag Aids in Unmasking an Alleged Car Swindle Scheme

It’s like it’s straight out of the movies.


The Eagan Police Department probably didn’t expect to be co-starring with an Apple AirTag in a gripping tale of automotive cat and mouse. At the heart of the story is Ron Vasquez, a man just looking to snag a good deal on a truck he found on Facebook Marketplace. What he ended up discovering was far more sinister: a malefactor allegedly reselling vehicles only to steal them back under the cover of darkness. And folks, the drama doesn’t stop there.

Check out a 39-car barn find here.

Vasquez met the seller in an Eagan parking lot for what appeared to be a straightforward transaction, but his gut told him something was amiss. “It’s almost like the car came with bonus red flags,” Vasquez remarked. A single freshly-cut key, a title that looked more forged than authentic, and a VIN number as elusive as a ghost; all these curiosities had him puzzled. But it was his wife’s phone that clinched it.

“My phone is zeroing in on an Apple device nearby,” Vasquez recalls thinking. The Eureka moment? The truck could be tracked via an AirTag. It was like a puzzle piece snapping into place, giving Vasquez that moment of clarity that leads many an on-screen detective to their quarry.

With this revelation, Vasquez did what any savvy individual would do—he alerted the police and provided all the juicy details. Consequently, the wheels of justice began turning, faster and more unyielding than a stolen sports car. Eagan Police Det. Sgt. Mark Kritzeck notes that the alleged perpetrator’s modus operandi was more sophisticated than your garden-variety car theft. “Most victims, unaware, would drive home and then return to find their newly-bought cars vanished. It’s like a scene from a movie, only too real,” Kritzeck elaborated.

And the detective’s advice for the aspiring car buyer? Trust but verify. “Do your homework, and if something smells fishy, believe that instinct. Don’t be the catch of the day,” he said.

Vasquez, for his part, feels a sense of relief and justice. “I was praying every night, not just for me but for others who might fall into this trap,” he reflected, thankful that the 20-year-old suspect is facing theft-by-swindle charges.

But the tale doesn’t end here. The alleged rogue seller, far from a small-time operator, confessed to seven such cases in Minnesota and a couple more in Illinois. He’s due back in court later this month, and it’s anyone’s guess what twists await.

So, what have we learned from this riveting story? AirTags are not merely lost-item locators, they’re tiny heroes in a narrative that proves life can be stranger than fiction. Ron Vasquez got more than just a truck; he got an unforgettable tale and the satisfaction of thwarting a malefactor. And remember, folks, in the world of buying and selling, always keep an eye out—because you never know when technology might just save the day.

Source: CBS News

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