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Colorado man warns others after car was stolen following apartment break-in

"It just blows my mind that somebody would dare go into someone's house"
Johnson stolen vehicle
Johnson apartment break-in
Posted at 4:45 PM, Sep 07, 2023

DENVER — Car thefts continue to be a major problem in Colorado. In 2022, approximately 40,000 vehicles were stolen with only 3,900 arrests made in connection with the crime, which represents less than 10% of stolen cars resulting in an arrest, according to the Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority. Now, a Colorado man is now sharing his story after he said his vehicle was stolen after someone broke into his apartment last month.

On Aug. 13, Tai Johnson said he was alone in his apartment in North Denver when he said he had left his window cracked open to allow air in and keep cool while he slept.

Waking up the next day, Johnson found that his window screen had been taken out. He then later discovered the person who broke into his home had also taken his car keys from his table and his car was gone.

He filed a police report for a stolen vehicle and filed a claim with both his auto and renters insurance. However, he was told he did not have auto theft insurance coverage for the 2013 Nissan Juke he had just purchased four months earlier.

"I think it was just, I didn't do the diligence of reading the fine print about exactly what I'm covered for. Which is, to me, it's just crazy — $165 bucks a month," he added.

Johnson is hoping his story will now serve as a warning to others.

"I didn't foresee having my car stolen," said Johnson. "I'm still kind of in shock from the whole thing. I kind of assumed insurance would, you know, cover me somewhat. But they said no, they can't," he said. "Just, everyone be careful. Read your fine print of your insurance policies."

Carole Walker, the executive director at the Rocky Mountain Insurance Association, told Denver7 Thursday it's important to be on guard — especially in a state like Colorado, "We do have high numbers for auto thefts, yet we have the attitude, 'It's never going to happen to me.' Unfortunately, as this gentleman found out — it can and it does."

Walker said auto theft falls under comprehensive coverage — which is not required in Colorado.

"Even though optional, comprehensive coverage is something you can choose to buy or not to buy, you have to consider whether you can afford not to have it. If your car were to be stolen, would you be able to pay out of pocket?" she said.

Johnson, a single father of two, said he's hoping to raise enough money to buy a new vehicle soon, especially because he hasn't been able to visit his kids as much because they live in a different city.

Johnson's friends have launched a GoFundMe fundraiser to help him purchase a new car.

Colorado man warns others after car was stolen following apartment break-in

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