Is a junk vehicle taking up space in your driveway?
You can now get rid of it at no cost and help catch wanted fugitives in the Tri-Cities.
Tri-Cities Crime Stoppers and Action Auto Services-Action Towing are working together to offer a new Cars for Crime Stoppers donation program.
"I think it's a fantastic idea," said Mike Levin with Action Towing. "Since we pick up a lot of cars, we thought this would be a great way for folks who believe and support Tri-Cities Crime Stoppers to donate their cars."
Abandoned vehicles, running or not, can be donated to the cause. The only requirement is the owner must have the title on the vehicle and make arrangements to donate it through Crime Stoppers.
Action Towing will pick up the vehicle for free, scrap it and write a check to Crime Stoppers for the fair market value of the car. If the car's still running and decent enough, Levin said he can sell it through a public auction and donate the proceeds to Crime Stoppers.
"We'll do a free pickup -- anywhere in the Tri-Cities," he said.
Mike Blatman, the law enforcement coordinator for Crime Stoppers, said this donation program provides a recurring revenue source for the nonprofit organization.
"It's good for us," he said. "There are national organizations that accept cars (by donation), but they have to be running cars. These don't have to be."
Tri-Cities Crime Stoppers features wanted bulletins of fugitives in the Tri-Cities or bulletins of suspects that law enforcement agencies are trying to identify.
Tipsters can remain anonymous and get receive a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information that results in a felony arrest if they call in the tip through Crime Stoppers.
Crime Stoppers decals will be put on all 14 trucks run by Action Towing, which has a shop and tow yard at 1948 N. Fourth Ave. in Pasco and 6223 W. Deschutes Ave. in Kennewick.
Trying to scrap a vehicle costs money and requires people to get rid of all the fluids, take out the radiator and gas tanks and remove the tires and more, Levin said. It can be a hassle, which often is why people just leave junk cars sitting on their properties.
"This is the way to get rid of them," Levin said, adding that Action Towing will incur the cost of fuel and the time to pay a driver to pick up the vehicles. "In the long run, this is such a great cause. As a business, I think we're obligated to participate in great causes. We might bear a little expense, but that's the cost of doing business."
Anyone with questions about their junk vehicles and whether they can be donated through the Cars for Crime Stoppers program, can call Levin at 531-6691.
To make arrangements to donate a vehicle to Tri-Cities Crime Stoppers, call Blatman at 582-1351.
More information is available at tricitiescrimestoppers.org by clicking on the link Cars for Crime Stoppers link.