Shooting victim's car accidentally auctioned off after being impounded as evidence

A Memphis man’s car was impounded as evidence after he was shot in November 2018. A month later, his vehicle was accidently auctioned off, and he’s now begging the city of Memphis to make things right.

Dewayne Dodson, a father of two, reached out to FOX13 for help.

“They started trying to work with me and figure something out when you all contacted them,” Dodson said.

It is a case FOX13 has been investigating for more than a week.

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“I was injured,” Dodson said. “The victim of a crime back in November.”

Dewayne Dodson was shot at a sports bar on Lamar Avenue. He said he was rushed to the hospital in critical condition.

“Once I woke up, my wife told me that they towed my truck,” Dodson explained.

Memphis police told Dodson his 2005 Chevy Trail blazer was evidence. A detective said there was an investigative hold on it, and Dodson would get it back once they wrapped up the investigation.

He called one day in mid-December to see if he could get some of his personal items from the car. The woman on the phone said they auctioned off his car for $1,000.

“When I contacted the detective, he didn’t know either,” Dodson said. “He was taken by surprise as well.”

The Memphis Police Department called it an “oversight” and an “unfortunate occurrence.” Dodson was told to file a claim with the city.

He did, and he was given $4,000 in return.

“They made a mistake,” Dodson told FOX13. “They sold my vehicle. I (still) owe (payments) for that.”

The amount he owes on the car is a lot more than $4,000, and he has the paperwork to prove it. His last statement shows he still owes more than $11,000 on a car he no longer possesses.

Dodson has been unable to work since late November. He’s still recovering from the shooting.

His SUV was the family car, so he’s been paying for family members’ gas and Uber rides to help get his wife and children around.

His last statement shows he still owes more than $11,000 on a car he no longer possesses.

“They told me that that’s not their responsibility to pay off my finances,” Dodson said. “All they are going to give me is the fair market value of the vehicle.

Dodson told FOX13 the money is starting to pile up, and he believes it’s all the city’s fault.

“I feel like they should reach out and make this situation right,” Dodson said. “$4,000 is not enough.”

The city confirmed the $4,000 is the fair market value of the car. They directed us to their legal department, but we have yet to hear back.

A city spokesperson provided the following statement to FOX13:

The payment was based on the value listed in the Kelly Bluebook.  The law obligates the City to compensate for the loss, which our legal team based on the fair market value of the vehicle.  The cost or balance of the loan is not a determination of the vehicle's fair market value.