Stolen Papa John's Camaro Found In Detroit Driveway

Aug 19, 2015 03:16 PM EDT | John Nassivera

Detroit police have found a special Camaro that was stolen from Papa John's Pizza on Sunday during the Woodward Dream Cruise.

The yellow vehicle, which is a replica of a 1972 Camaro Z28, was found Monday morning in an abandoned home's driveway across from Samuel Gompers Elementary-Middle School on Pierson Street on the city's west side, parked deep in some weeds with its license plate missing and the holder bent backward, according to Detroit Free Press. Police confirmed that this was the missing car used by the restaurant chain during last weekend's event after finding paperwork in the vehicle.

The trailer that carried the car was also stolen, and it was recovered Sunday night about eight miles east of where the vehicle was found at Wildemere and Bourke streets.

Papa John's CEO John Schnatter was the owner of the original Camaro before selling it to help his dad who was going through bankruptcy, WXYZ reported. After bringing the food chain to where it stands today, he paid a finder $25,000 to find the car and then paid the owner $250,000 to become its owner once again in 2010.

While the replica Camaro is displayed at Papa John's headquarters in Kentucky and hardly ever leaves it, it was brought up to Detroit for the Dream Cruise as a special occasion.

Police didn't notice any damage done to the Camaro, although an Altoids tin was seen wedged behind the steering wheel, Detroit Free Press reported.

"Because of the intense media pressure, we were able to get the vehicle recovered here between two vacant homes," Detroit police Sgt. Jonathan Parnell said, adding that authorities had spent 24 hours investigating the theft.

Parnell said that the police are offering an up to $10,000 reward to anyone who can provide tips that lead to the thieves who stole the car, adding that tipsters can call 1-800-242-HEAT.

The Camaro Z28 was one of three cars that were stolen during the Dream Cruise, with the two others being a black 1966 Chevelle and a 1966 Corvette.

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