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Car left decaying at mechanic lot, shop owner owes thousands

3 months 3 weeks 2 days ago Tuesday, January 23 2024 Jan 23, 2024 January 23, 2024 6:47 PM January 23, 2024 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - Alton Joe's car has been locked up in a fenced-in yard for three years. A judge says he's owed thousands of dollars from the mechanic shop owner who left it there to rot.

"What more can I do?" asked Joe.

He first dropped off his Lexus SUV at the Aamco on Florida Boulevard in August 2020. Joe paid over $5,000 for a transmission rebuild. Aamco made the repairs but soon after Joe said the car started to make noises. Joe says he was told by Aamco that those noises weren't related to the transmission repairs. In January 2021 the car broke down while he was driving it and he had it towed back to Aamco. It's been at Aamco since January 2021.

"He didn't say anything other than 'I'm trying to get the part,' and that's been three years ago now!" Joe said.

On Tuesday, Joe spotted his SUV in the rear of Aamco in a fenced-in area. The windows were partially rolled down on one side. Joe isn't even sure if the car will start. He says he gave up on getting the car back and bought a new one. He also hired a lawyer. In February 2022, Joe got a signed judgment saying he owed more than $7,000 from the mechanic shop. Interest is accruing and he hasn't seen a dime.

"What more can you do - you've gone through the judicial system and you still get no where," Joe said.

His rebuild came with an 18-month, 18,000-mile warranty. The warranty has not been honored and Joe says he's been ignored.

Court documents from 2022 show that the owner of Aamco Earl "Rusty" Roux stopped making payments on a loan. As of October 2023 he owed about $80,000 to a lender. After getting permission to garnish wages, the bank's response showed that Roux's bank account had a negative balance.

With his car sitting, unusable, Joe shares the same frustration others have expressed and doesn't think he'll ever get his car back. Last week, Aamco's corporate offices said that it will work to help anyone having trouble with this Baton Rouge Aamco location.

Roux did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

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