Ontario woman becomes accidental auto thief after key fob mix-up

Clay Curtis
July 12, 2018

The stolen auto was a 2015 black Infiniti QX50, but the woman didn't notice it wasn't the sedan she had rented. It was only when she complained about the vehicle's unkempt interior as well as the fact there was a set of golf clubs inside the auto that things became a little clearer.

In June, the woman went to Enterprise Rent-A-Car in Cornwall, Ontario, and rented a black Nissan Sentra, CBC reports.

A woman in Cornwall went for a bit of an accidental joy ride after confusing another man's vehicle for her rental.

Neither of the cars required keys to start the engine instead using key fobs, which the owner left in the vehicle.

"We investigate stolen vehicles but this is definitely a unique situation for us", said Stephanie MacRae, communications coordinator with Cornwall Police.

After renting the vehicle, MacKay said the woman drove three or four minutes to the local Walmart where she did some grocery shopping.

Two weeks later, when the woman tried to return that very same vehicle, the manager clued in.

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"She drove around and did her daily business in this stolen vehicle for two weeks", MacKay said. Police say she caused confusion when she tried to drop of an Infiniti - not the Nissan she originally rented.

Though police say there was a "happy and amusing ending to this story", they say it serves as a ideal reminder not to leave key fobs in unattended vehicles.

In the end - It was the manager at the Enterprise who was able to crack the case. There were papers in the glove box and cigarette butts in the ashtray, and even a set of golf clubs in the trunk. The rental auto manager examined the woman's keys and noted that, in fact, she had rented a Nissan Sentra, while the keys in her possession belonged to a Nissan Infiniti.

When, dropping off the Infiniti at the Enterprise outlet, she complained to the rental manager about the messy interior and the clubs, he noted the key he'd given her didn't match the vehicle she'd returned. The manager looked at the Infiniti keys and told her that it wasn't the original auto she rented.

There were no official charges so this story has a happy ending.

The man, who had reported his auto stolen, had his vehicle returned to him.

The manager and the woman, who police say was a "wee bit embarrassed" by this point, contacted police.

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