When Cars Are Used As Crimes

When we hear about vehicles being involved in criminal activity, we tend to envision offenses like getaway cars in bank robberies, high-speed freeway chases, and drive-by shootings. However, sometimes criminals use their cars to help them break the law in (misguidedly) creative ways. Here are five examples:

Murder. Police agencies note that a car can be a dangerous weapon in the hands of a drunk driver. The same goes for a sober person who has an axe to grind. A 33-year old Illinois woman was driving her car when she spotted a 17-year old boy whom she said had previously bullied her son. So she accelerated and slammed her car into the teen, pinning him against an apartment building and killing him. The woman was sentenced to 34 years in prison.

Drug dealing. You hear a lot about “drug houses,” but what happens when a drug dealer’s car is his headquarters? That was the case for a British man, who was busted for dealing crack cocaine and heroin from out of his car. He was found with hundreds of pounds of drugs in his vehicle – less than three years after being convicted and jailed for the exact same offense.

Meth lab. Selling drugs from a car is one thing – but what about making them in one? That’s what police in Huntsville, Alabama discovered in a Wal-Mart parking lot. Authorities had received a tip about a drug manufacturer and had him under surveillance, and they observed him trying to purchase more supplies needed to make methamphetamine. When police approached his car, they discovered that it contained a working meth lab. The suspect was immediately taken into custody.

Prostitution. While expensive callgirls tend to render their services in fancy hotel suites, sex workers at the other end of the financial spectrum must often make do with whatever is available. For one hooker in Gastonia, South Carolina, that meant engaging in the world’s oldest profession inside her client’s car in a car wash parking lot. Sadly, a police officer arrested her after noticing the client inside the car while the car wash was closed. It didn’t help that the client was observed to be “shifting in his seat.”

Illegal day care (aka child endangerment). It’s bad enough to use a car for work as a prostitute. But what’s worse is working in one car while leaving your one-year old son and daughter inside another car. When a woman in Oakland, California was busted after propositioning an undercover cop in his car, she told him that she had left her babies back in her vehicle. Thankfully, the two toddlers were found unharmed.

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