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Special Report: Don't Get Taken For a Ride

El Paso, Texas (KTSM) - A call from a NewsChannel 9 viewer launches a KTSM investigation, after he accuses a local tow truck company of taking him for a ride. 

Blaine Mullican went to brunch the first Sunday in March. He parked at a Wells Fargo Bank on Rojas and George Dieter in East El Paso. That's where Mullican said A.D. Wrecker Service towed his car. But when he went to get his car from the company's impound lot, Mullican claims A.D. Wrecker Service violated his customer rights. 

Mullican accuses A.D. Wrecker Service of not giving him a fee schedule explaining the charges on his $126 bill. He said they also wouldn't let him to pay his bill with a bank card. KTSM checked with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR), which said both of those actions are against he law. The TDLR told KTSM  A.D. Wrecker also broke the law by not having its Vehicle Storage Facility License current on the day it towed Mullican's car. The state agency also said the tow truck driver didn't have a towing license. 

The TDLR provided KTSM with a list of previous violations by A.D. Wrecker dating back to 2013.  Among the previous violations, failure to have proof of insurance in its trucks and not having legible information about the truck's specifications.

The tow signs posted at the Wells Fargo Bank where the tow occurred are under investigation by the TDLR. The signs appear to not follow requirements set forth by the TDLR.  The letters must be a certain size, depending on where they are on the sign. 

KTSM also discovered A.D. Wrecker is contracted as the tow truck company for El Paso County. The county's Fleet Manager explained it has received complaints about A.D. Wrecker in the past. The county is currently reviewing what KTSM uncovered about the company. 

KTSM went to A.D. Wrecker Service on Lee Boulevard to talk to the owner. We were told he was not on the property during our visit. Phone calls to the owner were also never returned. 

If you would like to report a bad tow to the TDLR you can file a complaint on their website. 

You can also challenge a tow by requesting a tow hearing through your local Justice of the Peace office. Visit their website to find the location closest to you. 

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