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Fast food diner has front seat to SUV theft


     Lunch at McDonald’s in Tabor City got a bit exciting for a Whiteville man who ended up with a front seat to a vehicle theft Monday, the Tabor City Police Department reports.

     Nelson Sanders, 18, told police he was eating lunch in his car in the McDonald’s parking lot when two men pulled up in 2006 Nissan Murano, the report by Lt. Gary Lewis said.

     After taking the key out of the ignition and placing it on the console, the Nissan’s driver and his passenger went inside the restaurant, the report said.

     Minutes later “a white male went in the Nissan through the driver’s door, then a white female got into the passenger seat,” the report said. “The male started the vehicle and sped off through Food Lion parking lot towards 904 East.”

     Sanders went inside to alert the men who had arrived in the Nissan. Both spoke limited English, and Lt. Lewis said he was able to get most of the vehicle information with a call to the vehicle owner, Sandra Lorena Gutierez, 41, of Salisbury. She is the wife of the Nissan’s driver, Cosme Efrain Mansilla Pena, 33.

     Value of the stolen SUV was listed at $2,200.

     Look for updates to this story here as warranted, and in the Tabor-Loris Tribune in print and online.