Friday, December 16, 2022

Tow Truck Drivers Charged with Theft in West Penn Township

Two tow truck drivers are facing theft charges in West Penn Township.

According to West Penn Township Police, on September 30, 2022, Township Police were contacted by the victim who reported that she had her vehicle towed by DAT Emergency Towing LLC, 3494 Summer Valley Road, New Ringgold, West Penn Township. She reported that the vehicle had been towed on September 27, 2022, from Mountain View Drive in Lehigh Township.

The victim reported that Todd Alan Deem Sr. arrived on scene with a tow truck. She stated just prior to Todd Deem Sr.’s arrival, the Lehigh Township Police arrived on scene. She advised the Police that her wheel fell off and that she contacted AAA Road service for a tow.

Todd Deem Sr. decided that he would move the vehicle to a nearby gas station until a DAT Emergency Towing LLC flatbed tow truck arrived.

The victim reports that once the car was removed from the roadway the Police left, and she waited for the Emergency Towing LLC flatbed to arrive. While she was waiting, Todd Deem Sr was questioning the victim about her auto insurance coverage. He directed the victim to call her car insurance company and file a claim by telling them the car was in an accident despite knowing the wheel just fell off. Todd Deem Sr. stated that the insurance company will cover the damage and bodywork. The victim told Todd Deem Sr. that she has CarShield Auto Protection and was not worried about damage to the vehicle. Deem Sr. improperly told her that in the State of Pennsylvania, if you get a flat tire or if your tire falls off, it is considered an accident. Police determined this incident was not an accident.

Todd Deem Sr. then suggested to the victim that instead of taking the car to where AAA Road service had contracted him to take it, he was going to take it to his storage lot because it would be better, and he did not feel like driving to Jim Thorpe and that the Police there would mess with the vehicle because of how the car looked. He then told her he would take it to Jim Thorpe in the morning and never mentioned any fees that would be associated with it. He told her that insurance would pay for everything. The victim again stated that she has CarShield Auto Protection and AAA Road service, and it will be covered by them. He then told her she could leave, and that the car would be towed as soon as the other driver arrived with the DAT Emergency Towing LLC flat bed.

On September 28, 2022, the victim contacted Todd Deem Sr. She told Deem that she was sending CarShield Auto Protection to come get the vehicle because he never towed it to Jim Thorpe as directed. He stated that was fine and she could send them to get the car. The victim noted that he never told her there was a payment and she never contracted them to take the car to their lot, it was his idea because he did not want to drive to Jim Thorpe.

The victim received a call from CarShield Auto Protection stating that they could not tow the car because it was in an impound lot. The victim then called DAT Emergency Towing LLC office and spoke to Todd Deem Jr. who stated that the car would not be released until payment was received. The victim questioned Deem Jr. as to why payment is due when AAA Road Service was dispatched, and the tow was part of the service. Deem Jr. responded that AAA Road Service does not cover accidents. The victim advised Deem that the vehicle was not in an accident. Deem Jr. informed the victim payment must be made and to call back later for a price because the office was closed and hung up on her.

September 29th, two days after the vehicle was towed, the victim’s mother contacted DAT Emergency Towing LLC and spoke with Todd Deem Jr. about how to get the vehicle from the impound lot. Deem Jr. stated the fees are $1,071. 00. The victim’s mother stated that the tow was supposed to be free with AAA Road Service. Deem Jr. insisted on charging for 2 tows even though it was Deem Sr.’s choice to move the vehicle until the flat bed arrived. She further stated to Deem Jr. that the vehicle was not in a motor vehicle accident, and Deem Jr. insisted she turn it into her insurance as an accident for financial purposes.

Both Todd Alan Deem Sr. and Todd Alan Deem Jr. were arraigned before Magistrate Serina for Theft by Unlaw Taking-Movable Prop, Theft By Decep-False Impression, Receiving Stolen Property, and Fraud Document-Insurance Rate Determ. Both were released on unsecured bail.

Preliminary Hearings are scheduled for December 20, 2022.