'Stolen car' proves to be a runaway
Adelaide - A car reported stolen from an Australian shopping centre parking lot has been found more than two weeks later in the closed garage of a nearby home where it had apparently rolled unaided and unnoticed, police said on Friday.
The owner of the station wagon had reported it stolen from outside a shop in a suburb of Adelaide city on Dec 18, South Australia state police said in a statement.
The owner had only bought the car two days earlier and had left it for 15 minutes.
The car was found neatly parked in the home's garage on Wednesday when the residents returned from vacation. The residents initially feared there had been a burglary because the garage door had been forced open.
Police concluded that the car's owner had failed to leave its gear in park. The car then rolled across the parking lot, across a street and then down a driveway. It then bumped under the garage door by knocking it off its tracks. The door then closed behind it.
"It remained under cover for 17 days and so we've recovered the stolen car and cleared up the break in," police Senior Constable Tim Dodds told Australian Broadcasting radio.
The owner, who has collected his slightly damaged car, has told police he now recalls hearing a "bang" which was probably it hitting the garage door.