Skip to comments.Don't EVER Do This!
Posted on 07/29/2012 5:51:06 PM PDT by Lazamataz
DO NOT EVER DO THIS.
I met a fellow about 7 years ago in the rooms of Narcotics Anonymous. He was getting cleaned up; so was I. We became fast friends. Soon, I was helping him out, and he was helping me.
Sometimes I loaned him money -- a lot -- and sometimes he loaned it to me. Once, I loaned him my car for some jobn interviews. Everything went well.
He contacted me recently and asked if I could rent him a car. "Why can't you rent it?" I asked. Well, he had a valid license but not a physical copy of it. Sure, I replied. I can do it.
I rented the car for him from Enterprise. He paid for the whole deal, including the extended insurance (which I demanded he do). Four days pass, the car needs to be returned or re-rented. No problem, he comes with more money and we re-rent it. Four more days pass, and I contact him. No answers. I call him all day. No answers. Now I am getting worried.
I go to where his last address was, and his girlfriend answers (also in the program of recovery) and she says he moved out some time back. She hints he's returned to using. Now I am getting REALLY worried.
I call and call and call. The next day, I go to Enterprise, and they inform me that because he is an unauthorised driver, no coverage will be afforded me under the insurance. I may be 100% civilly liable. They instruct me to report the car stolen. I call Chamblee police, and an officer comes. Police are always suspicious, and this one is too, telling me "my story does not add up" (but it did! It is what happened!) and informing me that I could and would be charged with a FELONY (Theft by Conversion) if the car is not returned by nightfall.
The guy is still not answering. I might be in SERIOUS trouble for being an idiot -- not for truly being a criminal.
The next day he answers, finally. Tells me not to panic, that the car is fine. I tell him HE and I will BOTH be charged with a felony and that we may be already. He shrugs it off ... "No big deal. I've had felonies before."
Yeah, a comment like that, he's definitely using again.
He promises to get the car to me. I wait at home, calling every fifteen minutes. Excuse after excuse on why he's not there yet. Finally, he stops answering again. Oh crap.
A day passes, I'm reaching out to my 12 step friends to locate him. One person saw him in an apartment complex. I stake it out for a while. No luck.
Another day passes. Enterprise calls me, they tell me they haven't issued a warrant yet, but this will be the final day.
So I start thinking like an addict. I was one, I know how they think. The only interest they (used to be me, too) have is their next hit. BINGO. I text him that I will offer him 100's in cash to bring the car back.
Suddenly he calls. He's willing. I tell him to meet me at my place of employment, where there are armed security guards. He pulls in, he's got 2 friends with him. Hmmm. I lure him out of the car by putting the cash on the ground. He gets out, I get in and order the friends out. The dude says, "Aren't you at least going to drive us somewhere?" Hell no. I'm in sight of armed guards right now, this is where they get out. I let them know they need to leave. I wave to the security guards, they wave back. They had no idea what was going on, but the wave convinced the hoodlums to leave.
This was the most terrifying week I have had in a long time. I was certain I was going to be jailed, with little prospect of an immediate bond, and a loss of job, and a felony accusation that my attorney told me was likely to stick.
All because I was too nice, too naive, and just plain stupid.
Don't let anything like this happen to you. I aged about 5 years.
I love dogs. People...not so much.
Don’t change yourself because someone else took advantage of you and behaved badly.
No worries...my compassion was sucked out of me about 4 yrs ago. Afraid I’m just a hard hearted bitch.
Man, that sucks. Glad everything worked out okay.
Words of wisdom, for sure.
Sorry. I gotta. Right in Proverbs it tells you not to put your name on someone elses debt. I'm following the instructions from now on.
I was two hours from a felony warrant for being naive and nice.
Aw, Laz. Sucks to be used. It happens to me a lot. I never learn, maybe because I’m told I have a big heart. I know you do, too. ((hugs))
Geeze louise, Laz! Thank God you got the car back. I’m sorry you ended up in that man’s drama and glad it worked out in the end. God bless you.
Thanks for the story. I have always been pretty conservative, and so liberals think I am mean or not generous. But I have also had experience being generous to my family, and that has nearly destroyed me. Now I know far better than some conservative think tank paper how charity can sometimes destroy a person.
I’m assuming he knows where you live? He definitely knows where you work, and perhaps the hours you work. Having worked in uniform behind bars with all sorts of felons for 25 years, I’d be worried he’d rob you while you were at work. Sorry, but being the security conscious person that I am, it’s hard for me not to think that way. I hope he doesn’t bother you anymore. I know you’ve learned a valuable lesson. The world is full of trusting people like yourself who have been taken advantage of, mainly because you try to help someone out.
I am so glad you fixed that situation. Sounds like it was by the skin of your teeth too.
I’ll wager you won’t be doing this again.
Melissa, I almost disappeared. Everyone would have been “Where’s Laz?”
He would have been in jail for a crime of stupidity.
Keep the nice, lose the naive.
That makes two of us.
Laz, you had a scare but i’m glad you solved it in the end.
My experience is that some of life’s most valuable lessons come from some really scary “near misses”
Stay away from dysfunctional people.
Not skin of my teeth. Skin of my testicles. It got THAT close. If I hadn’t once been an addict and didn’t know how they think, I would be in jail RIGHT NOW trying to figure out how to get bonded out on a BIG bail amount (2 times the vehicle worth) and of course my job would be long gone.
I was gone for like 5 months, only one FReeper seemed to have noticed- Morgana.
That would have bad news. Who would you have hit on?
No good deed goes unpunished.
Under that definition, an addict who (I thought and had all evidence) was recovering, then I too would be a ‘dysfunctional people’. But I’m not.
Glad to hear all things worked out for you. Thank you for sharing. Always a good reminder for those of us who let our guard down or always believe in the goodness of others
I would have had a hard time not shooting as he bent over to pick up the cash.
Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.
Laz...first of all, you are a good egg. I would have done the same. Before doing something like that again, you probably should consult with another person who has no skin in the game. Trust is a difficult thing. I still have solid trust with most people these days but as The great Ronald Reagan always said: Trust but verify.
Anybody here really need to be told to never trust a junkie?
You wager correctly. I won’t be doing that again.
So glad you’re here to tell your tale, Laz. With friends like that...well you know the rest!
I'm a junkie, wtc. Recovered, but I'm a junkie. We do recover.
Yep. So offer a junkie some cash and they’ll jump through a hoop?
Glad you came out of it relatively unscathed.
Although I would have sent you a file with a cake in it.
I’m gonna stick with Proverbs on this one, from now on:
Whoever puts up security for a stranger will surely suffer harm, but he who hates striking hands in pledge is secure.
I know that feeling very well. I rented a U-Haul for a down and out family member and had a similar experience. Real nightmare.
Glad it worked out for you, and lesson learned.
That’s a scary story there Laz.
I wish you all the best in your journey away from drugs. :-)
It can happen to the nicest people... look what taking a few pills for a damaged back led to for Rush.
Long ago I made a rule to never loan something that I might need back. You can still help but avoid the risk.
Nightmare is the proper word. Five days of sheer terror. Loss of a great Federal contractor job (immediately, if you are accused of a felony you lose the job THEN), and if a conviction occured -- which my attorney said would be hard to beat, because the judge instructs the jury: "Read the contract. Who's name is on it? Was the car returned? No? Guilty." -- if a conviction occured, try and get a computer programming job with a felony. Not gonna happen.
I've been in recovery for 11 years now and have seen a lot of this happen. But there have been some true miracles, so don't fail to help another addict.
God's will, not mine.
Yes. If they are active, the next hit is all they care about. I have a friend who rents to alcoholics and addicts (3/4 house). He says the tough ones to get to leave are the alchys. The addicts, he slips them 50 or 75 to scram and they are gone. That next hit is very important to the active addict.
Glad you got through that one, Laz. I keep my program friends at arm’s length. A sponsor once asked me to meet up with someone with $200 as a “huge favor” to him. On top of the booze he had gambling issues. He never brought it up again and seemed to harbor no ill will for my refusal.
I wasn’t referring to the action of renting a car. I meant don’t change your inner nature of being a helpful and generous person.
Sorry you’ve had to go through this ordeal, but by sharing your experience, you have taught us all a valuable lesson. Thank you for the schooling.
Who is that?!?
I will help another addict.
I will not put my name, my legal risk, and my cosign behind ANYONE, addict or not.