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Thief used crude paint job to disguise rare stolen car

UPI News Service, 08/02/2017 

Police arrested an Iowa man after he allegedly stole a one-of-a-kind car and tried to disguise it by covering it in black paint.

The car's owner, Marshall County Supervisor Steve Salasek, said he noticed the yellow 1966 Ford GT40 replica was missing when he tried to take it out of storage on Tuesday.

"I went to go get it out of the storage shed, and it was gone," Salasek said. "It wasn't there."

Police arrested Patrick Allen Chamberlin on Thursday after he was spotted driving the car, which he apparently attempte to disguise by painting it black.

"It was painted black, looks like with a roller but otherwise undamaged," Salasek said.

Marshalltown police Chief Michael Tupper said residents spotted bits of the car's original yellow color sticking through the crude paint job and helped police track it down.

"If it hadn't been for the community's involvement and interest in this story, we probably would not have found the car," he said.

Tupper added that even with the drastic paint job, the rare GT40 would be a hard sight to miss in the neighborhood.

"It was a very unique car and I feel pretty comfortable saying it was probably the only car like this in Marshall County, maybe in the central Iowa area," he said.

Chamberlin was charged with theft, possession of a controlled substance, drug paraphernalia and several traffic offenses. Police are also investigating whether or not he painted the car himself.

Salasek said he hoped to restore the car to its original glory after the strange incident.

"One way or another, it'll come back to life," he said.

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