LOMPOC – When California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) investigators were made aware of possible shady deals taking place at Mid State Motorsports in Lompoc, deals that left consumers with vehicles in poor condition and no pink slips, they put their investigative expertise to work. As a result of their investigation and knowledge of motor vehicle sales laws, the Santa Barbara County district attorney has filed charges against the business owner and two employees.
“We want consumers to call DMV investigators when something doesn’t seem right, we are here for them,” said Kenny Ehrman, president of the Association of Motor Vehicle Investigators of California (AMVIC). “We are sworn peace officers who protect consumers from fraud and theft, among other things. We conduct thorough investigations that can lead to prosecution and restitution. We want consumers to know we are here for them and uniquely qualified to assist with these type of investigations.”
The Santa Barbara County district attorney announced on May 16, 2019 that felony and misdemeanor charges have been filed against the Mid State Motorsports former owner Alysha Marie Hibson, and two ex-employees of the dealership, Karl Wolfgang Bischoff and Daniel Merlin Davis. The charges stem from alleged illegal conduct related to several vehicle sales transactions at the dealership, which is now closed.
Hibson is charged with:
- two counts of grand theft, in violation of Penal Code section 487(a), a felony,
- grand theft auto, in violation of Penal Code section 487(d)(1), a felony,
- and three counts of employing an unlicensed vehicle salesperson, in violation of Vehicle Code section 11713(h), a misdemeanor.
Karl Wolfgang Bischoff is charged with three counts of acting as a vehicle salesperson without a license, in violation of Vehicle Code section 11800, a misdemeanor. Daniel Merlin Davis is charged with grand theft, in violation of Penal Code section 487(a), a felony. Defendants Hibson and Bischoff have appeared in court and pled not guilty to the charges. Defendant Davis has not appeared in court and a warrant has been issued for his arrest.
The case will be heard again on June 18, 2019 in the Lompoc division of the Santa Barbara Superior Court.
One alleged victim went to a local consumer protection reporter. You can view the report -Tipline Investigation: Lompoc car dealer skips town, leaves buyers hanging