FAIRMONT — A collector of classic cars has reclaimed one of his prized possessions thanks to the quick thinking of a Robeson County sheriff’s detective.
Dick Taylor, a Lumberton businessman who owns about 35 collectible vehicles, was reunited with his 1982 Jet electric car after it was stolen from behind Fourth and Chestnut streets.
“I realized the car was stolen when the police called me,” Taylor said. “It was a fairly odd phone call because I hadn’t realized it was even gone. It’s a very unusual situation. I felt blessed to get it back though. It’s a unique car. There are fewer than 25 left so it makes me feel great to hold on to a piece of history.”
At 4:55 p.m. on Monday, sheriff’s Detective Alex Monroe was on patrol when he spotted a vehicle on the side of the road at Advanced Recovery in Fairmont. Monroe recognized as man with the vehicle as being James Ray Lowery, 45, of 2625 Fairgrove Road in Fairmont.
“He suspected suspicious activity,” said Capt. Anthony Thompson of the Robeson County Sheriff’s Office.
The vehicle had minor damage, including a broken window and a dented door. Its batteries had been removed and placed on the side of the road, apparently so that they could be sold. Lawmen believe that Lowery intended to sell the automobile as scrap metal.
Lowery has been charged with breaking and entering a motor vehicle as well as larceny of a motor vehicle. His bond was set at $5,000.
“If it hadn’t been for an officer paying attention, we would have lost our car,” Taylor. “They get a lot of complaints but they do great things and the officer needs to be commended for his diligence.”
Taylor estimated the car’s valued at between $5,000 and $10,000.
Lowery has an extensive criminal history that includes larceny, breaking and entering and fraud, according to the Division of Adult Corrections.