NEW YORK (WABC) --The car's transmission was toast, one woman says was just hours after she had a run in with the attendant. When she got stuck in neutral, she called on 7 On Your Side to help her against the largest parking company in the U.S.
"It scares to me death," Michelle Revere said. Who could blame Revere? Her car had it's emergency brake disabled, and it wouldn't drive. Michelle says it happened as revenge taken out on her Jeep by a parking lot attendant who she caught using her car as a cell phone charger.
"As soon as I saw I said, 'Hey, whose phone is this in my car,' and he said, 'Oh I'm sorry I'm using your charger to charge my phone,'" Revere said.
That was in the morning, later that night when she turned the key. "Won't go, won't move," Revere said.
She says the garage blamed it on wear and tear due to her car being over 12 years old.
"No one could figure out what happened to it the next day. I had to have the car towed all the way to my mechanic," Revere said.
"I think somebody was abusing the car," said Guy Blehl, a licensed mechanic.
Blehl has serviced transmissions for 40 years.
He says he just did routine maintenance on the car's transmission six weeks prior and it was fine. Blehl said only high heat and tremendous force would cause gears to melt and crack.
"The way you cause this damage, if you step on the gas to the floor and put it reverse, drive reverse drive to the point where it shatters these pieces, that's the only way this is not normal wear and tear," Blehl said.
Michelle put in a claim with the garage, which sent out it's own adjuster to take a look. The parking garage's own adjuster estimated more than $4,800 in repairs. But SP Plus which owns Michelle's garage, wanted to to pay her thousands less, by giving her the "book value" of the 12 year old car.
So we paid a visit to the garage. A manager told 7 On Your Side the employee had been fired. And days after we got involved?
"This is even more than my damages," Revere said.
Michelle got a check, $8,000, paying her repairs, car rental, tow fees and then-some.
"I am thrilled. I tell everyone know when you have a fight or a battle call 7 On Your Side," Revere said.
SP Plus said it was paying Michelle's claim in full, before getting our calls.
Now the big takeaway, if you have any damage done at a garage make sure you document the condition of your car, take pictures while at the garage. And get a written report from the garage manager, before you leave.
Keep any service records, that way you can prove you've kept up maintenance on your car.