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Disabled Team's Van Was Towed, Not Stolen

September 13, 1993

It doesn't lessen the sting or the disappointment, but the reported theft of a van that was to have carried a team of developmentally disabled softball players to the Special Olympics in San Diego was not a theft after all.

The van had been towed.

"It was never stolen," said police Sgt. Frank Reynoso. The owner of the van, William Tebbs, who has coached the Tri-Valley Allstars for three years, "just parked it in the wrong place"--in a driveway of a Sylmar condominium complex, where he was staying with friends. "The property owners had it towed away," Reynoso said.

To Tebbs' relief, the van, which was packed with equipment, was not ransacked. A day before, he sadly had told the 11 members of the team that they would not be able to rent another vehicle in time, leaving many of them in tears.

"What's this city coming to?" Tebbs said at the time.

Only later did Tebbs learn that van had been towed out of the driveway at 4:30 a.m.

Tebbs said he will apologize and tell the team, "I parked in the wrong place and got it towed away."

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