|Test drive of used car turns out to be quite a journey for pair of local men|
Two county residents are now facing Class D felony charges of auto theft because of a long, long test drive of a used car from an Austin auto dealer’s lot.
On March 25, a staff member of White’s Auto Sales on U.S. Highway 31 North reported to the Sheriff’s Department that a would-be customer had not returned a 2002 blue Saturn that he had taken for a test drive. Chief Deputy Don Campbell and Reserve Deputy Bobby Thompson took the information from the salesman.
A description of the man was given: 6 to 6-2 in height with a German swastika tattoo on his neck and brown hair with a goatee-type beard. Local departments were notified and given the descriptions of the car and driver.
Around 10:30 p.m. that evening, Chief Deputy Campbell received a phone call from Deputy Rex Herald. Herald told him that he had stopped the car on Goshen Road in the southeast section of the county. The driver gave his name as Damon Hines, 44. His passenger, who fit the description supplied by the salesman, was Lawrence “Kojak” Campbell, 39.
Hines and Campbell were taken into custody on other, unrelated charges.
An unsuccessful supervised probation on a 2013 auto theft charge and a driving while license is suspended with prior conviction were cause to hold Hines initially. Campbell’s arrest record showed several pending infractions, including three charges of driving while license is suspended.
Deputy Herald later told Chief Deputy Campbell that Hines has stated that Lawrence Campbell came by his house, apparently in the White’s Auto Sales car, and asked him to drive him home because Campbell had no valid driver’s license.
The men were stopped in Lexington Township. Campbell lives on North Michael Drive in Scottsburg. Hines lives on South Second Street in Scottsburg.
In a photo line-up conducted for the car salesman by Indiana State Police Detective Brian Busick, the salesman reportedly selected Lawrence Campbell’s photo as the man who never returned the car.
Preliminary pleas of not guilty were entered for each of the men as they attended initial hearings in Scott Superior Court on March 27. Senior Judge Nicholas South presided.
Each was assigned a trial date of June 19, and each was provided with the services of a public defender.
Their bails were initially set at $15,000 corporate surety bond or $1,500 cash bail, but those amounts were later raised to $25,000 corporate surety/$2,500 cash bail after Judge South approved petitions for detainer and/or greater-than-standard bond filed by the office of Scott County Prosecutor Jason Mount. A 15-day hold without bond was also placed on each man.
According to court records, each man had violated paroles on earlier charges, Hines on an auto theft in 2013 and Campbell on a theft charge dating from 2011.
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 April 2014 09:08|