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State senator vows to look for solution to Body shop


((MUSIC+))BRITTANY GLAS: “DARREN…”DARREN WYDERMYER, OWNER, D-TOWN: “YOU’RE NOT WELCOME.” BRITTANY GLAS, REPORTING: “WE JUST WANTED TO TALK TO YOU BECAUSE A NUMBER OF CUSTOMERS HAVE REACHED OUT TO US, SAYING YOU’RE HOLDING THEIR CARS HOSTAGE.”ROBERT: LAST NIGHT ON KXAN NEWS AT 10, WE TRACKED DOWN THE OWNER OF THIS AUSTIN AUTO REPAIR SHOP — D-TOWN BODY SHOP.CUSTOMERS TELL US HE’S BEEN CASHING THEIR INSURANCE CHECKS… BUT HOLDING THEIR CARS HOSTAGE FOR YEARS.TONIGHT, THE COMPLAINTS KEEP COMING IN… AND OUR INVESTIGATION’S CAUGHT THE ATTENTION OF A TEXAS LAWMAKER. SYDNEY:SHE TELLS OUR BRITTANY GLAS – IT’S TIME FOR THE STATE TO STEP UP AND PROTECT CUSTOMERS.CAMILO MACIEL, CAR OWNER: “I NEED MY VEHICLE. I MEAN, WHAT DO I DO? HOW DO I GET AROUND?”CAMILO MACIEL, CAR OWNER: “TO THIS DAY. TO THIS DAY, I HAVEN’T GOTTEN MY CAR BACK.”SARAH GASKINS, VAN OWNER: “HE WOULD TELL ME EVERY TIME, ‘OH, IT’LL BE READY NEXT WEEK. IT’LL BE READY NEXT WEEK.’ AND THEN, OF COURSE, IT WAS NEVER READY.”SARAH GASKINS: “I TRIED EVERYTHING, EVEN THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S AND YEAH, I DEFINITELY THINK THERE SHOULD BE SOME SORT OF REGULATION ON THAT.”SEN. DAWN BUCKINGHAM, R-REALLY CAN’T EVEN IMAGINE IT’S HAPPENING, BRITTANY GLAS: WE SHOWED CENTRAL TEXAS SENATOR DAWN BUCKINGHAM WHAT WE DISCOVERED HAS BEEN HAPPENING AT D-TOWN BODY SHOP IN AUSTIN… FOR YEARS. SENATOR DAWN BUCKINGHAM, R-LAKEWAY: “CONSUMERS NEED TO KNOW WHEN THEY TAKE THEIR CAR TO A BODY SHOP THAT THEY’RE GONNA BE TREATED FAIRLY AND GET THEIR CAR BACK. I MEAN, THAT’S JUST A STANDARD ASSUMPTION YOU SHOULD MAKE WHEN YOU GO INTO A PLACE OF BUSINESS LIKE THAT.” BRITTANY GLAS: BUT IT’S NOT SOMETHING THE TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF LICENSING AND REGULATION LOOKS INTO.UNLIKE MANY TRADES AND BUSINESSES, THE STATE AGENCY DOESN’T LICENSE BODY SHOPS, MEANING — THEIR CUSTOMERS DON’T HAVE MUCH PROTECTION. SEN. DAWN BUCKINGHAM, R-LAKEWAY: “WE’LL BE WORKING HARD ON THIS NEXT SESSION AND SEEING HOW TO PROTECT CONSUMERS.”SENATOR BUCKINGHAM SAYS — IT WOULD BE TOUGH FOR T-D-L-R TO LICENSE BODY SHOPS RIGHT NOW, EVEN IF THE AGENCY COULD, BY LAW. THAT’S BECAUSE SHE SAYS — THE AGENCY’S “MAXED OUT” … WITH SO MANY OTHER TYPES OF LICENSES AND SO FEW PEOPLE TO ISSUE THEM FOR THE ENTIRE STATE. IN RECENT YEARS, WE’VE TOLD YOU HOW THEY’RE RESPONSIBLE FOR EVERYTHING FROM COSMETOLOGISTS TO ELECTRICIANS… EVEN MASSAGE THERAPISTS… AND, THERE’S BEEN A PUSH TO ADD MORE STAFF AND FUNDING IN RECENT SESSIONS. BUCKINGHAM SAYS — IT’S NOT CLEAR WHAT THE SOLUTION SHOULD BE THIS TIME AROUND, BUT IT’S DEFINITELY SOMETHING THAT SHOULD BE SOLVED. WE’LL KEEP YOU UPDATED. BRITTANY GLAS, K-X- A-N INVESTIGATES. ## SYDNEY: REMEMBER, WE TOLD YOU HOW D- TOWN OWNER – DARREN WYDERMYER HAS CALLED POLICE ON UPSET CUSTOMERS IN RECENT YEARS.HIS LANDLORD TELLS US… WYDERMYER’S NOW TAKING HIM TO COURT — FOR EVICTING HIM FROM ONE HIS SHOP’S LOCATIONS. INSIDE, THERE ARE DOZENS OF VEHICLES LEFT BEHIND.AND SINCE OUR INVESTIGATION — THE LANDLORD’S BEEN WORKING TO GET THEM BACK TO OWNERS.WE’LL KEEP YOU UPDATED… AND CATCH UP ON OUR COMPLETE COVERAGE RIGHT NOW IN THE INVESTIGATIVE

Bernard Jenkins

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