We would have been furious.
Range anxiety is still a major concern for electric car owners because once an EV runs out of juice, it isn't always easy to find a nearby charging station. Even with the vast network of Tesla Superchargers in the United States, owners may run out of electricity at inconvenient locations. The Telsa Model 3, even in its base trim, offers over 200 miles of driving range, but those miles can tick by very quickly.
That is exactly what happened to one owner of a Tesla Model 3 in Florida, according to WPBF News. Phil Fraumeni, a homeowner in Lake Worth, Florida woke up when his gardener asked him to move his car off the lawn. When Fraumeni said he didn't leave his car on the lawn, he went out to find a white Model 3 parked out there.
The Model 3 was indeed parked on the lawn, plugged into an external socket on Fraumeni's house. Worrying that someone might be sleeping in the car who may be confrontational, Fraumeni called the police. Deputies arrived and discovered there was no one in the vehicle. They then tracked down the owners of the car and learned it was not stolen.
Amid the commotion, a young couple came up to Fraumeni and told him they plugged in the car overnight after it ran out of power. "From what the boy said from midnight the night before, so 12 hours it was charging," Fraumeni said.
Much to our surprise, the Tesla driver didn't even apologize for stealing electricity and Fraumeni didn't press charges or ask to be reimbursed. Fraumeni's wife posted on Facebook that she would have demanded compensation but she was in Orlando for the weekend with their grandchildren. The moral of the story is, if you run out of electricity in an electric car, just call a tow truck, don't try to steal electricity from a neighbor.