Police searching for identity theft/auto theft suspect

Crime watch

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma City Police Auto Theft Investigators are asking for your help identifying a man suspected of stealing people’s identity to sell stolen cars.

Edward Stupka is the latest victim in this elaborate plot.

Stupka went in to update the tag on his car and got some shocking news.

“When I brought my insurance papers in, the lady ran the tag and said, ‘The car belongs to someone else’ and I said, ‘it’s my car,’” Stupka said.

Police said they believe the suspect stole personal information out of his mailbox and used it to get the title to his car.

“You have somebody who is basically going through a neighborhood and shopping for whichever type car he’s wanting to steal at the time,” Sgt. Jennifer Wardlow said.

The suspect steals victim’s information, makes a fake ID and uses that to get a duplicate title for the victim’s vehicle.

Then he steals a similar car and changes the VIN number to match the ill-gotten title.

“Obviously the man is getting this information, getting the duplicate title so he can go out and sell a stolen car,” Wardlow said. “You have a number of crimes being committed here.”

Stupka served in law enforcement for 27 years before he retired; he hates having his name used to cover a crime.

“I was upset,” he said.

Police have the suspect’s photo from the fake ID he made.

They’re confident someone will come forward with information on him.

As for Stupka, he said, “I check all my cars now about once every month to make sure they’re still registered to me.”

He’s paying closer attention to what goes on around his home and his quiet neighborhood.

“All I can say is you just have to be aware of what you’re doing,” he said.

If you recognize the suspect, contact CrimeStoppers at (405)-235-7300.

You can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.