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UC Santa Cruz student living in car made to pay $3000 after suspected theft

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (KION-TV)- As other students get ready for the next quarter of their education, Robert Cedillo is looking to make sure his SUV is back to normal.

Cedillo had his car stolen when he wasn’t even in town.

“I come back from vacation, and my car is gone,” Cedillo said. “It’s not where it’s parked, so I ran down to the police department.”

Now Cedillo went through the process thinking he’d get help right away. Instead, he went through lots of paperwork just to find out the car was reported as a regular impound and not as stolen.

“I felt frustrated pretty much because I relied on so many people to try and help me,” Cedillo said. “Most did, but at the end of the day it’s where I live, where I sleep. I just couldn’t really control it.”

After three weeks, Cedillo got his car back. it wasn’t the same, though.

The front was spray painted on, trash was thrown on the inside, and it cost him $3000 to get the car out of the impound. Fortunately, he had help.

“From first posting that GoFundMe, it got up, maybe up to 900,” Cedillo said. “I had no idea I had that type of support around me. People were reaching out to me, messaging me. It caught me by surprise the amount of support people were giving out.”

With his car back and an amazing amount of support to help him get it back to the way it was, Cedillo is ready for his final year of school.

“I now have more hope that this is gonna work,” Cedillo said. “I’m gonna make it through school. This is my final year, this is the last push, and so I can finally get things done.”

Cedillo looks to continue finishing his senior year here at UC Santa Cruz to earn his Bachelor’s in Science Degree and become an engineer to do, as he put it, “make the world a better place.”

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Karl Cooke

Karl Cooke is a Multimedia Journalist for KION News Channel 46


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