Raymond Melton of Pittsburg, Kansas last saw his 1962 Impala on February 10, 2017 around 9AM. Melton had planned to spend his Saturday changing the oil and doing a little bit routine maintenance on his classic Chevrolet, but 5:30 Saturday morning his plans had changed.
Thieves had taken his beloved Impala during this almost 24-hour window leaving Melton heartbroken. Instead of spending the day tinkering with his beautiful blue 2-door, he spent the morning contacting law enforcement and his insurance company.
Melton is widower who is in 70’s and this Impala had become his hobby during retirement. After having lost his wife, the car became a source of therapy that helped him cope with the grief and loss. “He had just bought that car in 2015, it had 80,ooo something original miles on it and had a 283 CID with an automatic transmission,” said Chris Norris of the Triple C Agency, who is Melton’s insurance agent. Norris told us; “He dove into the car to deal with the death of his wife.” According to Norris, Melton is devastated by the loss of his car and he has no idea of who might have taken it.
It is hard to imagine the type of lowlife scumbag, that would steal a car from a retiree who is dealing with grief. As if it weren’t bad enough before, now Melton is dealing with the memories of his beloved Impala every time he looks out his kitchen window. Melton had the car parked right in front of the kitchen window and next to his garage. Norris also told us that Melton let his pet chihuahua outside early Saturday morning, when he noticed his car gone.
Some may think that since Melton had insurance, everything is going to be alright in the end, but that is not the case. Norris helped Melton get his classic Chevrolet covered, and was devastated to hear about the theft. Norris went to Facebook to post information about the theft as well as offering a reward for the recovery, apprehension, and conviction, of the person or persons involved in the crime. When asked about the reward, Norris said “that is out of my own pocket,” and he added that Facebook friend, Craig Dales offered to match his $1000 reward. Classic car insurance may help recover some of the costs, but most car lovers would much rather have their car back than a check.
Detective John Harrison of the Pittsburg, Kansas Police Department said, “We did a neighborhood canvas, but we did not find anything.” Although, the car was likely taken down the alley, detectives are actively searching for surveillance footage that might aid in the investigation. Harrison stated that law enforcement had spoken to an individual, but this person did not have information about the incident. “If anybody has any information please contact the police department,” said Harrison. The Pittsburg Police Department can be reached at (620)231-1700 or try contacting the Kansas Bureau of Investigation and use their criminal activity tip sheet.