OKLAHOMA CITY - Forrest Bennett is a teacher's assistant at OU during the week and an Oklahoma House of Representatives candidate on the weekend.
"They tell you to expect the unexpected on the campaign trail, but this was a little bit beyond the pale," said Bennett, first time candidate for House District 92.
Bennett was busy Saturday morning campaigning for House District 92 in the area of S.E. 22nd and Stonewall.
When he was knocking door-to-door, he turned around and realized his car was gone.
"Our conversation couldn't have been more than a minute long, and I was right on the porch. I didn't go in at all. When I turned around to walk back to my car, it was gone," Bennett said.
Bennett said he left his car running, thinking it would just be a 30-second stop.
“It took a while to process. I mean, I really can't describe it. It's never happened to me before," he said.
His white 1995 Toyota Avalon wasn't an expensive car, but it had a lot of meaning to Bennett.
"It had my campaign life, and it had a banner and a bunch of my cards and buttons and things like that,” Bennett said.
It also had a key to his P.O. Box, where people can send campaign contributions.
But, this bump on the trail isn't stopping him from campaigning.
"In fact, Rep. Shane Stone drove me yesterday while I knocked on doors, and he helped me out, and other people have offered to let me borrow their scooters and cars and things like that," Bennett said.
Bennett said this situation explains exactly what his platform stands on - neighborhood safety and decreasing crime in communities.
He's hoping he can reach out to the possible constituent who did this to him.
"I'd like to know more about the situation that they were in, and I mean that,” Bennett said. "What put this person in a position where they wanted to steal a car or thought they had to?"
If you’ve seen a white 1995 Toyota Avalon with a license plate number of 549DW, please call Oklahoma City police.
A $2,000.00 reward for information leading to the recovery of the stolen vehicle.
The reward is being offered by fellow democratic candidate Jess Eddy.
“I was greatly dismayed to hear that my democratic opponent, Forrest Bennett’s car was stolen recently. I would like to see his car returned so that
he may continue to fully engage Democratic voters in our House District. I don’t want to have an advantage in this way. I appreciated Mr. Bennett’s
compassionate words for the perpetrator of this crime, and I want to help in the effort recover his car. I know that Mr. Bennett would do the same for
me. It is embedded in the Oklahoma Democratic spirit to have good will towards all and to help our fellow Oklahomans in times of need. Mr. Bennett
and I are putting our careers on hold to pursue good for our community and our State, and I can appreciate that the loss of a car has a significant impact
on his finances and daily life. A vehicle is for most of us one of our largest investments as I know it is for Mr. Bennett and myself. I can only hope that
the reward is a large enough incentive for a member of our community to report information on this crime.”