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Calera woman says someone stole gas out of her tank

Published: Nov. 17, 2021 at 11:00 PM CST
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CALERA, Ala. (WBRC) - You fill up your gas tank and the next day, you get in your car to go somewhere and nearly all the gas is gone, that’s what a woman in Calera said happened to her.

The average price of gas in Alabama is up more than a dollar from a year ago. At the time of the incident, gas was $3.19 a gallon. Haley Clayton believed her gas was stolen because of high prices.

“There’s no lock. Anyone can open it [gas door] and anybody can stick anything in there,” Clayton described. “I never thought somebody would steal my gas.”

When Clayton got into her car Wednesday morning, she said the half tank of gas she’d just put in was nearly gone.

“I had two miles till empty,” Clayton said.

With her son in the backseat, she said it was a stressful, frustrating drive to the nearest gas station.

“I live paycheck to paycheck. So, filling up my tank is a big deal for me and probably for many other people,” Clayton said.

Unfortunately, Clayton said she was not the only person dealing with an empty tank at her complex.

“Maintenance says they have had several complaints about it,” Clayton said.

WBRC spoke to the Calera Police Department which said they had not had any reports filed so they couldn’t comment.

“I should have, and I regret that. I didn’t think anything could be done,” Clayton said about not calling the police.

Gas theft is considered a misdemeanor in Alabama as long as the gas stolen is less than $400. The punishment generally includes fines or jail time. Clayton said her complex didn’t have cameras and said her calls to management had not been returned by the close of business that day.

“Anybody can just come up and get gas if they wanted it. At the end of the day, I’m just thinking maybe they needed it more than I did,” Clayton sighed.

Clayton said she was planning to get a lock for the tank and keep a closer eye on her car.

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