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Man can't drive the car he legally purchased from police because it was stolen

CANTON, Ohio - (NEWS 5/CNN) A Canton man said he can’t drive the car he just bought from a police auction because it was reported stolen and the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles refused to title it.

Ryan Rider said he purchased a 2002 Saab 9-3 convertible from the Canton Police impound auction earlier this summer for $450. At the time, police handed him the title, which shows the Canton Police Department as the vehicle owner.

When he went to the BMV to have it titled in his name, they refused, he said, telling him it was reported stolen in Broward County, Florida. That’s despite the fact that the car had already apparently been re-titled to Canton Police.

“It’s kind of crazy because I bought this car from the police,” Rider said. "If you sold this car and you didn’t know it was stolen, you’d be in jail for receiving stolen property. However, they’re selling me a stolen car and it’s sitting here in the driveway for two months not being driven.”

Rider called the Broward County, FL Sheriff’s Department who, he said, never returned his call. Then, he tried Canton.

“A lady did contact me saying later on in that day it would be handled, and here we are and it’s still not handled,” Rider said.

Over the phone Thursday night, a police spokesman referred News 5 to the impound lot.

A Broward County Sheriff’s department report confirms the car was stolen from a home there in 2016. Rider said he wants someone to take his concerns seriously and he wants to finally drive the car he legally purchased.

"I’m sitting here with a stolen car that I can't do nothing with,” he said. "The person in Florida’s not getting any resolution. I’m not getting any resolution.”

On Friday, Canton Police released the following statement to News 5: 

"The vehicle in question was in our impound lot and we followed standard procedures to obtain a salvage title for the vehicle. When the purchaser went to transfer the title it was found that the authorities in Florida did not remove it from NCIC database when it was recovered here.

"The entry has since been removed from NCIC and Mr. Rider has been advised he can get his title transferred. We assisted Mr. Rider during this.

"We follow proper procedures through the state BMV when obtaining these titles and we are working with BMV to prevent anything like this from happening again.

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