Christopher Barnett of Brownstown Township spent the last seven months pouring cash and sweat into his 1998 Jeep Cherokee, adding aftermarket parts to get it off-ready.
Monday morning, the Jeep hit the road without him. After breaking into other cars, thieves stole it from Barnett’s apartment complex near Telegraph and West Road.
As Barnett made a police report with Woodhaven Police Department, the Jeep was spotted on a security camera in Melvindale.
The owner of an auto parts store posted a screen grab of the Jeep to Facebook, asking if anyone knew who it belonged to.
“My heart dropped,” Barnett said.
Barnett eventually talked with the auto store owner, who told Barnett his Jeep was involved in an attempted smash-and-grab, heavily damaging the main garage door to the shop.
“I don't want it coming back to me thinking that I did it when I was heading to work and they stole it out of the parking lot where I live,” said Barnett, who says he will do whatever it takes to get his Jeep back.
“I have over $6,000 tied into this Jeep. Other people wouldn't think, ‘Oh $6,000, I got a $20,000 car,’ but I’m a single parent and that’s my hobby. That’s my life,” Barnett said.