Downtown Auto Sales investigated by state after Consumer Watchdog raises questions about missing car

State finds multiple violations

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Pictures and paperwork are all Eddie Graham has left of his car.

"It was a white Maxima," he said.

He drove it for a year and says he invested $2,000 into repairs.

At his apartment Graham pointed out, "This is my spot where I park my car every day." 

One day, the car suddenly vanished.

"That's the first thing that went through my head, someone stole my car," said Graham.

Calls to the police revealed Downtown Auto Sales of the Palm Beaches, LLC (1501 North Dixie Highway, West Palm Beach) repossessed the car.

"I wonder why they are taking my car because my car is paid for," said Graham. 

Eddie says when he got a receipt for his last car payment, the car dealer asked for more money for the tires.

"I bought the car as is.  As is means the whole car.  Tires included," said Graham.

Eddie didn't pay the money, and he never got his title.

The Consumer Watchdog called the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. They found 10 violations with this transaction, such as failure to abide by the contract, false financing, and title issues.
The state said it's the fifth time the state found violations at the car lot since 2011.

Nobody at the dealership could answer our questions. On our last visit, we were asked to leave.

According to state paperwork, Robert Cook owns the dealership. Nobody answered at his Tequesta home.

The dealer told the state he would return the car to Graham, or the amount paid for the vehicle.

Graham refused both offers.

He feels he's also due the $2,000 he paid to repair the car.

Auto dealers are required to have bonds, which is in essence an insurance policy that they will follow the rules.

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