Columbia man loses livelihood after truck gets stolen; police warn not to leave cars running unattended

Columbia man loses livelihood after truck gets stolen; police warn not to leave cars running unattended

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Vanderbilt Singleton is a quiet guy, who says he doesn’t bother anyone.

That’s why he was shocked to find out that someone had stolen his truck right out of his front yard.

“Who could do some evil stuff like that,” he questioned. “Terrorize me like that? All I do is work and come home. I don’t understand it.”

Singleton had some trouble starting his truck last Thursday. When he got it going and realized he’d forgotten something in his house, he left it running. That’s when he found out just how quickly thieves can strike.

“That’s my work purposing truck,” Singleton said. “That’s all I do is work and come home and rest and go back to work. That’s my livelihood because I use it to haul my equipment because I do landscaping work.”

Thankfully, Singleton hadn’t hitched his equipment up that morning, but now, he doesn’t have a stable way to get to and from his jobs.

“After I came out and seen that my truck was gone, my whole world went down,” Singleton said. “Christmas is supposed to be a time for peace and love, and it’s really not being like that. People need to just do the right thing and stop stealing.”

With temperatures dropping, the temptation to warm up your car unattended is on the rise, Singleton is asking everyone to learn from what happened to him.

“If you have to go back inside,” he said. “Take your keys back inside with you.”

When asked about what will happen to Singleton’s business now, he was unsure.

“Your guess is as good as mine,” he said. “I don’t know what I’m going to do.”

Singleton’s truck is a navy blue 2010 Nissan Titan. The back windows are tinted and there’s a small dent on right tailgate. That’s what he’s asking you to keep an eye out for.

Officials with the Richland County Sheriff’s Department said they see a significant uptick in vehicle thefts during these winter months. They’re advising everyone: Do not leave your car running unattended. If it’s too cold on your hands to hold the steering wheel, reps have suggested purchasing a steering wheel cover or gloves.

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