WGNO News Reporter Darian Trotter has the video and reaction from hotel guests.
“Somebody must have really wanted a car,” hotel guest Elliott Davis said.
New Orleans Police say the man seen in security camera video, exchanging pleasantries with a parking attendant, had only one thing on his mind — how to get someone’s car out of the parking garage of a French Quarter hotel.
Investigators say after a few seconds of trying to con the attendant about a lost ticket at the Wyndham Hotel, the man placed the car in reverse, shifted gears, and barreled through the security gate; stealing the car.
“Well I’m glad I don’t have a car at this point. I feel a little safer I don’t have to worry about that,” Davis said.
“I think I will go check now to see if it wasn’t ours,” hotel guest Rick Buda said.
This is not the first time police have had to investigate theft at a French Quarter hotel.
Last summer there was a rash of burglaries in which someone off the street walked into several hotels, checking for locked doors and stealing whatever they could get their hands on.
Detective Ryan St. Martin says the auto theft happened two weeks ago.
“You do get the occasional straggler who may walk on a hotel garage floor or in a parking garage throughout the city that may be looking for just what he found; keys in a center console and a vehicle unlocked,” St. Martin said.
So far the Wyndham Hotel has not commented publicly on the case.
“Obviously they’ll probably look at their security, look it over again and make sure they have the proper security audits in place and check points and things like that to prevent it in the future but things like that are going to happen especially in a big city like this,” Buda said.
Police did recover the white 2006 Chevy Malibu, but they are still searching for the suspect.
If you have information that might help police, call Crimestoppers at (504) 822-1111.