By Chris May
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A New Jersey mom turns to Eyewitness News after thieves steal the family van.
She found herself caught in a bundle of red tape, trying to get answers from police and her insurance company.
But nothing was happening, until 3 On Your Side stepped in. CBS 3 Anchor Chris May has the story.
As Hurricane Irene rolled in last August, Tiffany Leggette was ready to roll out.
“There was talk of possible evacuations,” Tiffany said. “So I had prepared my vehicle just in case we did have to leave.”
Tiffany planned for almost everything. Except for what happened next.
“The night of the hurricane August 28th into the 29th, my vehicle was stolen.”
Tiffany reported the crime to the Camden Police Department and her insurance company.
Weeks went by with no word. She says the police wouldn’t return her calls.
It wasn’t until November 14th that a big break arrived in the mail. It was a parking ticket.
“When I looked at the ticket, it said September 8th, 11 days after my car had been stolen,” said Tiffany.
No one had informed Tiffany that her stolen van had been ticketed and towed weeks earlier.
But she says the police told her she couldn’t have the van or its belongings because Tiffany no longer owned it.
She had signed it over to the insurance company so a claim could be processed.
“Very rudely I was told that, you know, almost too bad, so sad kind of a thing,” according to Tiffany about the response from police.
And she says the insurance company was telling her that the police would not return their calls.
She was stuck in the middle. That’s when Tiffany called 3 On Your Side.
When asked who she thinks is ultimately responsible for the problems, Tiffany said, “I can’t even say the police department so much as the administration.”
We contacted everyone involved and within a day, Tiffany’s insurance check arrived.
It was enough money to get another car.
Not long after we called police, Tiffany got the call that her van was located in a towing lot.
She was able to get some of her belongings back that were in the vehicle.
“My medications, so that’s good,” she said as she inspected what was left in the vehicle. “A couple of my daughters toys, her umbrella.”
The most important items were her bibles, which she was glad to find.
“I contacted you like a week and a half ago and I’m ecstatic,” the mother of two told us. “I was at a stalemate, nothing was going on, so thank you very much.”
We asked a spokesman for the Camden Police Department to check out what went wrong here.
He told us a detective called Tiffany Legette two weeks after her van was stolen to let her know it had been found.
We checked her phone records and found no such call.
The police sent a certified letter to Tiffany at around that same time. But the letter was mailed to the wrong address.