Where's my car? Phoenix PD helps drivers find where they parked - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

Dude where's my car? Phoenix PD helps drivers find where they parked

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) -

You've heard people say "remember where we parked?", but you may be surprised how many times they don't. It doesn't surprise Phoenix Police, they help people find lost cars all the time even after some people report them stolen.

We've all heard of the phrase bird brain. It's defined as an annoying stupid or shallow person. But why is it that birds have amazing navigation skills finding their nests after flying thousands of miles. And why is it that humans who are supposed to the most intelligent can't remember where they parked a few hours ago?

"The car is lost. We aren't lost. The cars lost...I'm looking for my car" said Mike O'Shaughnessy. It happens all the time. People forget where they parked and they can't find their car. "I would put it down to basic incompetence maybe senility at this point I don't know" said Mike.

Some even go as far as calling the police, reporting their car stolen. Thinking if it's not where they remember parking it someone must have taken it.
"I was completely sure in my head that my car was definitely stolen because it wasn't where I left it" said Mike.

Another driver admits he's done it. We promised him we wouldn't tell everyone who he is. He reported his car stolen only to find it a day later and few blocks away from where he thought he parked it. "I walked back to where I thought I left my car and it wasn't really there so my natural inclination is that I thought it was stolen because I was positive that's where I left my car" said the unnamed driver. It happened, he was at a festival in central Phoenix. He parked his car at Macayo's. He remembers pulling a cake out of his car setting it on the ground and forgetting to pick it up and take it with him. When he came back to Macayo's later that night the cake was there  but his car wasn't.

Turns out he forgot  he left the festival for a little bit that day  and came back parking in another spot. He reported the car stolen to police and his insurance. A day later a small flashback and he remembered where he actually parked his car. "I thought oh my god I'm an idiot and then I suppose I was scared because now I have to call the police and explain to them hey remember last night when I told you my car was stolen".

"A lot of times they're like oh I feel like such an idiot and we're like Okay" said Officer Arnie with the Phoenix Police Department.

Phoenix Police Officers who patrol downtown say it happens constantly. The majority of all stolen car reports downtown are really lost cars and eventually found. "Almost every night that there's a large event somebody cant find their car" said Officer Kevin Bennett.

Most lost or stolen car reports happen during sporting events or on weekend nights after a night of drinking. The worst offenders are Diamondbacks fans. Police say the constantly forget where they parked. Excited and rushed to get to the game they get turned around inside the stadium and forget which garage they parked in. During game night, officers help these lost drivers going garage to garage to help them find their car.

Phoenix Police don't seem surprised by the problem, "no, because I see it so often" said Officer Daniel Garza.

And it happens to everyone young, old, and famous. FOX 10 asked if any notable people had forgotten where their vehicle was, Officer Garza replied "none that I want to mention, but one" said Officer Garza. We couldn't get him to tell us who. But another Officer had a funny story about a local doctor who reported his car stolen only to find it months later.

"He said I drove the car down to the airport flew out of town was gone for about a week took the super shuttle back to my office where I believe I parked my car it wasn't there so I reported it stolen eventually long term parking called me and said hey are you ever going to pick up your car" said Officer Bennett.

Sky Harbor Airport has a special call box for people who forget where they parked. Parking assistants will even drive people around. We came to Sky Harbor on a slow day and in just one-hour four people needed help.

If you're forgetful there are a few things you can do to help you remember where you parked. Police say take a picture of your car and the space you parked in.  you can also use your iPhone maps and drop a pin at your current location. Police say you can also keep your parking garage pass on you, it'll help them figure out which garage you parked in, others only learn from their mistakes

"Maybe out of all of it I'm much more conscious about where I leave my car remembering where I left it, My new terror in life is that my car actually does get stolen because I'll be too afraid to call the police" said the unidentified driver who reported his car stolen.

Police say no matter how embarrassed you are. If you're lost or can't find your car ask for help. They've seen it all in downtown Phoenix.

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