Eric Michael Smith Rents U-Haul, Gets Arrested After Keeping It For 24 Days Because He “Didn’t Have A Ride Back Home” | August 31
Ocala: He was supposed to have the U-Haul for 24 hours, he kept it for 24 days and is now facing jail time. According to reports, Eric Michael Smith was arrested after refusing to return the U-Haul that was subsequently reported stolen.
A deputy saw the white box truck with an Arizona license tag drive past him on SE 58th Avenue. When he conducted a computer inquiry on the vehicle, it showed that it was reported stolen on Thursday, Aug. 22.
The deputy stopped the rental truck and questioned the driver. Smith said he had rented the vehicle about two weeks ago and was supposed to return it about a week and a half ago.
He said he knew he was supposed to return the truck “but didn’t have a ride back home from the location so he was waiting to return it.” And when asked if he had been in contact with U-Haul, he said, “No, my phone was not working.”
Records showed that Smith rented the truck on Aug. 2 and was supposed to return it the next day. That meant he had kept the vehicle an extra 24 days without contacting U-Haul to arrange for payment or the return of the truck.
Eric Michael Smith was arrested and charged with grand theft of a motor vehicle. He was being held on no bond and is due in court on Oct. 1 at 9 a.m. to answer to the charge.
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