The real owner then sues the hotel.
Imagine being the owner of a $300,000 Ferrari 458 Spider and you have to trust a complete stranger, a hotel parking valet, with the welfare of your prized possession. In theory, there shouldn't be any problems, but that wasn't exactly the case in this semi-bizarre situation. According to USA Today, 73-year-old attorney James "Skip" Fowler parked his Ferrari outside the Vinoy Renaissance Resort & Golf Club late last July while attending a lawyer's convention in St. Petersburg, Florida.
The 458 Spider remained parked there for more 12 hours because Fowler figured it'd be safe, considering this was a high-class luxury resort. Enter 28-year-old Levi Miles into the picture. He later showed up at the parking lot with a woman, Chloe Rimmer, and told the valet the car was his. In fact, he demanded the keys and explained to the valet the ticket was in the car and he'd bring it back later that evening. Well, that didn't happen. After Miles and Rimmer sat in the Ferrari for "quite a while" the two sped off. The valet quit paying attention earlier because he figured a tip was no longer going to happen. It didn't take long for Miles to get pulled over by the local police because his taillights were not on. The officer noted Miles had some difficulties handling the car.
That's probably because cocaine was found on the center console. Rimmer also had marijuana in her purse. Miles tried to explain himself in several ways. He claimed he just met Rimmer that evening and told her the Ferrari was his. "I was just trying to impress the girl I just met at the Vinoy," he told police. Miles was later charged with grand theft and drug possession, but claims he's innocent of the first charge. Why? Because the valet gave him the keys. The real owner, Fowler, meanwhile, went nuts when he found out what happened. He accused the hotel and valet company of negligence and claims he had to spend "significant sums" on car inspections, repairs and legal fees.
He also says the car's value has been reduced because of what happened. We don't know if there's any real damage or how many additional miles were put on, but there must be something wrong somewhere. And now he's suing both the hotel and valet company and you know what, he has every right to given the circumstances.