It’s the end of my summer break, I have all of the Mustang’s suspension parts, and the suspension work will begin soon. Now is probably a good time to tell the story of that Capri that I previously posted pics of. Remember it? That little gray car that looked like a 4-eye Fox Body Mustang?
Here it is. It’s a gray 1986 Mercury Capri 5.0 RS w/ T-tops. About a month ago, it was going to be the donor car for my build. But now, it’s the subject of a legal dispute. In other words, this car is a Craigslist deal gone bad.
Some of you (like Royal96) have already been following my thread in the Underground about getting screwed over. For those of you that haven't seen that thread, this is going to be a very long story here, so bear with me. I’ll start with a generic description of the seller’s ad for that 86 Capri on Craigslist. It was listed on July 1.
FOR SALE: 86 5.0 MOTOR, T5 TRANS, 8.8" REAR END W/ 3.73’S ($1000 OBO)
I’ve got an ’86 Capri 5.0 RS that I’m selling the drivetrain out of. The car has about 130,000 miles on it.
The engine is a 5.0 302 motor with the stock bottom end and stock cam. It’s got GT40P heads, Comp Cams 1.6 roller rockers, upgraded valve springs, GT40 intake, Explorer 65 mm throttle body, MSD distributor, and Ford Racing headers. Only problem with it is that the rear main seal leaks.
The T5 trans is bone stock and has never been opened up. It doesn’t slip or grind in any gear at all, but the clutch is starting to slip a little bit.
The 8.8” rear end has the traction-lok limited slip diff, 4-lug drum brakes, and the factory 3.73 gears. No problems with it at all. I’ll even throw in an aluminum driveshaft as well.
I’ll pull everything out of the car once it’s all paid for. Only selling since I’m going to build a drag car out of this Capri and just can’t upgrade the original drivetrain any more.
I thought to myself, “THIS. It’s all of the major parts I need for my build… FOR ONLY $1000!!!”
I called the seller who we’ll call Alex. I explained my interest in the parts he was selling and we agreed to meet up so that Alex could show me how everything performed in the car.
The day we met up on July 5, Alex took me for a ride in his 86 Capri. The car ran and drove perfectly in all driving situations. In-town, cruising, highway, acceleration, braking, handling, everything about how that 86 Capri ran and drove was perfect. We got back to where Alex was living and he showed me everything under the hood and underneath the car. Everything that his ad said checked out, both the good and bad parts. Alex and I wrote up a bill of sale with our signatures and the date, I paid Alex the $1000 in cash, and I went off on my merry way.
On July 8, Alex texts me that he’s having trouble with his living situation, but that the motor and trans had been pulled out of the car. Alex then told me that I would have to wait on the rear end since the new place he was living at (an apartment) wouldn’t allow a car w/o an axle to be in the parking lot. I told Alex that I would be able to wait on the rear end and everything until about early August, and that he could take his time in finding another axle to put under his car.
About 3 weeks go by, and on July 26, I texted Alex asking him if he still had the motor and trans, and how the axle situation was coming along. No response. So then I called his number. “I’m sorry,”
my phone says. “You have reached a non-working number.” “OHHHHHH… SHIT.”
I thought to myself.
The next day on July 27, I go to the address where the transaction between Alex and I took place. A lady (who we’ll call Tammy) answered the door and I asked if she knew where Alex the Capri parts seller man was at. Her reply was, and I’m quoting this exactly, “Alex that piece of shit?”
At that point, I was dazed, I was confused. “What do you mean by that?” I ask. Tammy goes on to explain that Alex wasn’t really a part of her family and that while living at her house, he: 1) Screwed her over on rent, bills, and other forms of payment. 2) Destroyed a sizable portion of her house’s basement. 3) Was kicked out of the house 3 weeks ago. 4) Is a rip-off / con artist.
Tammy had no idea where Alex was, but her son did. Tammy got Alex’s new phone number from her son and I thanked her for her help. Before I left, Tammy told me this, which still sticks in my head very clearly to this day. “Brett. You’re lucky, it’s a saving-grace, a godsend, that Alex doesn’t know where you live. I would try to track him down, but I’m afraid of what he’ll do to my house, my pets, or me. Alex trusts you much more than me, so use that to your advantage.”
I thanked Tammy for the help and the advice, and started my way home.
That same evening on July 27, I texted the new number that I got from Tammy that I was still ready to pick the Capri’s drivetrain up next week on the first week of August. Lo and behold, I get a text back from Alex saying that he started a new job and that his hours vary. He never asked me a thing about how I got his new number.
Over the next few days, I continued to call and text Alex about how I was ready to pick up the Capri’s drivetrain. He never responded to anything. On August 4, a week had gone by without any responses from Alex, so I decided to call him from a phone number other than my own. HE ANSWERED.
I told Alex my name, that I had a good truck, and that I was ready to pick up the Capri’s drivetrain. Before I even finished that sentence, he hung up on me. “AHA!”
I thought to myself. “That son of a bitch is INTENTIONALLY ignoring my calls and texts!”
For the next 2 days (August 5-6), my mother and I dug into Alex’s life over the internet and did everything we could in order try and track him down. We were only able to find possible addresses of his in terms of where he lives, but couldn’t find any specific address of his. Alex has had quite a few addresses over the years. However, we were able to find out what town he lived in, that he has been going through his 2nd divorce, where he worked, and his 2nd ex-wife’s address.
On August 7, I went to the county police station in order to file a police report over the whole situation going on. I told the police the whole story, to which they responded that I’m dealing with a civil case and that I couldn’t file a police report. I could either go to the County Courthouse to file a small-claims court case against Alex, or I could file a consumer fraud case with the State Attorney General’s Office so that they could track Alex down and get my money back from him.
Just yesterday (August 13), after a week of preparations for my next semester of school and my Mustang’s suspension rebuild, I filed a case with the State Attorney General’s Office. The case is in an office advocate's hands now, they'll track Alex down, and they'll continue to inform me as their investigation progresses.
One of two things have probably happened. Alex has either not pulled any of the drivetrain parts out of the Capri at all, and is still driving it. Or worse, he might have pulled the Capri’s drivetrain out and resold it to somebody else for more $$$. Alex and I have made a deal as stated in the bill of sale. I’ve held up my end of the deal by paying him the $1000, but he hasn’t held up his end. He still has those Capri drivetrain parts in his possession, and is ignoring all of my attempts to contact him. The case is in the hands of the attorney general’s office now. I don’t care if I get any of the Capri’s drivetrain parts now, I just want my $1000 back. Alex is NOT
getting away with this.