ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – An Albuquerque woman learned she can’t just keep a rental car forever and get away with it, and when police pulled her over, she thought she had the perfect story. It started when police saw a silver Hyundai speeding down I-25 in Albuquerque back in February.
The officer who ran the California plates quickly learned the car was reported stolen from Advantage car rental at the Sunport. “Stay in the car. Put your hands on the roof!” the Albuquerque police officer is heard saying in the lapel video.
The driver, Michael Jimenez, has a DWI history and was booked for speeding and driving with a revoked license. Passenger Kimberly Bautista, who rented the car for a week in early December, tried to explain why she still had it two months later.
“I rented the vehicle because my car was being worked on and so I informed the car rental that my car wasn’t ready yet,” she told police. Police didn’t buy her story, letting her know that Advantage reported the car stolen when she failed to return it back in December.
“Does that seem a little strange that you haven’t been paying for the last month and three weeks?” the officer asked.
“Well, I’m waiting if the insurance is going to take care of it,” Bautista said. She and Jimenez were booked.
Bautista was hit with a theft-related felony charge of more than $20,000. She didn’t have a criminal record before that arrest. Jimenez pled not guilty to his charges and has a bench trial scheduled for June.