POSTED: Wednesday, April 28, 2010 - 2:18pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, April 28, 2010 - 7:17pm
EL PASO, TX - Amber Esquibel thought she was catching a break.
Three weeks ago the full time medical student's car broke down on US 54 and a man stopped to help her.
"The man stops, Esquibel said. "He seemed like a decent guy. His name was David. He stopped. He told me he could help me. He owned a shop right here on Dyer. He was a mechanic."
His name, David Valenzuela, was one of the few things he told Esquibel that day that she says was true.
Freddy Silva is the real owner of American and European Automotive, the shop where Valenzuela took Esquibel's car to fix it.
"Well the thing is, he has his own business ok, his own shop and American European has nothing to do with what happened," Silva said.
What happened was Valenzuela told Esquibel he would charge her $405 to fix her fuse box, her broken window and add freon to her air conditioner.
The shop owner says Valenzuela was merely renting a space in the shop. He also inspected Esquibel's car and says Valenzuela never made any of the repairs he promised.
Valenzuela never showed up to work again after he was paid by Esquibel.
He also skipped out on the year lease he signed with Silva, putting him out almost $5,000.
More than a week of calls and visits to David Valenzuela's home went unanswered.
"I got burned and i couldn't believe it," Esquibel said. "Cause after all this, after me and this guy, David, you know. I was telling him, I'm skeptical of going and taking my car to a mechanics because I'm scared of getting burned."
Even though Mr. Silva's says his shop isn't responsible for Valenzuela's deception, he agreed to help fix Esquibel's car.
He also says he'll check the background of anyone he rents to from now on.
"Now i know, its never happened to me but now i know," Silva said. "I'm gonna have to be more careful who I rent to. That's the first time its happened to me."