Son helps father recover stolen vehicle, suspect arrested

ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind. -- A Mishawaka man’s stolen vehicle was recovered after his son found the vehicle several days later, according to court documents.

Mishawaka Police responded to a home in the 900 block of Merrifield Place on February 14 to investigate the theft of a vehicle.

The owner told police he left his vehicle running when a man got into his vehicle and drove away.

Three days later, on February 17, the victim’s son contacted police because he came across his father’s car in the 200 block of S. Hill Street, reports said.

He told police when he checked the vehicle’s VIN, a man with tattoos came out and claimed he had a bill of sale inside, reports said.

The man got into the vehicle and drove away.

The officer spoke with the resident of the home told police the man with the tattoos was Coty Oblinger.

On February 18, the victim’s son flagged down an officer after he found his father’s vehicle and blocked it in, reports said.

Oblinger was also at the scene.

Oblinger told police the vehicle was his and he had a bill of sale inside the vehicle, reports said.

The victim responded to the scene and confirmed the vehicle was his and consented to a search of the vehicle, reports said.

No bill of sale was located in the vehicle, police said.

The victim’s son said Oblinger was the same person he saw with the vehicle the day before.

Oblinger was charged on February 19 with one count of auto theft.

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