Excuse Us Whilst We Fling Our Phones Into A River

, , , , , , | Romantic | March 6, 2020

I used to work in a car stereo shop. We had a reputation for electrical work; mechanics in the area would often refer tricky stuff to us because we were the only ones who had the equipment and knowledge to figure it out.

One day we received a call saying that they were referring a customer to us with questions about a GPS tracker.

After a short discussion, it became clear that the customer was trying to find out if a tracker had been somehow installed in her car. Apparently, her crazy ex had been stalking her all over town… just happening to appear wherever she was, even at places where he should have had no idea that she was even there.

I had never seen someone look so scared; she was pale as a ghost and her voice shook when she spoke. She was so terrified that she was literally looking over her shoulder every few seconds and speaking in whispers. 

I gave a cursory inspection at the easy spots in the parking lot. There was nothing under the wheel, nothing on the roof or under the chassis, nothing in the engine compartment, and nothing under or in the seats. There was no factory GPS, no On-Star, nothing that would track her. 

I told her that I didn’t see anything in the typical spots, but if he had somehow managed to have access to her vehicle for a good block of time, then God knows where it could be. 

I told her that I would have to do a shop charge to go deeper. For $75 an hour, we’d look anywhere and for as long as she wanted.

She paid for two hours of inspection without blinking. We took the whole dash apart, dropped the headliner, pulled a bunch of interior panels, flashlight and mirrored the chassis, and generally tore the thing apart. We couldn’t find a single wire out of place anywhere. The whole thing looked totally stock and untouched. (After a while in the industry, you can tell if you’re the first to remove a panel.)

I handed her the keys and reviewed what we did and where we looked as I walked her back to her car. She looked so relieved to finally know there was nothing on her vehicle.

Then, her ex drove by our lot, staring her down. He wasn’t even subtle; he was practically hanging out the window, staring at her like a hawk stares at a fat mouse.

That was my holy-s*** moment: watching this guy blatantly cruise past our business. I’m a big guy, and he didn’t even spare me a glance.

She just burst into tears, practically diving behind me to hide. One of my coworkers came sprinting over to us and said that that vehicle had cruised past three times already, and this was his fourth pass in the two hours we had been stripping her car practically down to the paint.

I walked her back into the store. I told her that we knew it wasn’t in her car, but that I wanted to check something that might help her.

I asked to look at her phone. 

Sure enough, location services were on and had geotagged at our store on Facebook. In fact, it had geotagged everywhere she’d seen him. 

She had him blocked from all her social media in moments and turned the location services off for good measure.

We moved her vehicle out of sight from the road and called the police. We didn’t want her leaving without some proper actions taken, or without a police vehicle on-site to make sure she got away without him coming by again.

From there, we helped her get a restraining order filed against him, and she was able to leave safely.

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