Taxi had too few miles for N.Y. trip

August 04, 1997


Staff Writer

A Turner Taxi cab that was reported missing two weeks ago could not have traveled to its intended destination in New York, a company official said Sunday.

Thomas Lee Turner III, who is owner George Turner's son, said the cab's odometer had a little less than 600 miles more than it did when Kenneth Wayne Bradford checked it out July 23. Turner, who retrieved the cab from Myrtle Beach, S.C., last Friday, said the distance between there and Hagerstown is almost exactly 500 miles.

Bradford began work between 3 and 4 that afternoon, Turner said. Figuring that drivers put an average of 15 miles on cabs each hour, he said Bradford should have run up almost 100 miles before leaving just before 9 p.m.


"There's no way in the world that cab made it up to New York, or the odometer would show more miles," Turner said.

Bradford radioed the company that night and said he was taking three men to Queens, N.Y., from Noland Village. He said he took the $450 up front but did not drop the money off before leaving, Turner said.

A dispatcher heard other people in the background when Bradford checked in, Turner said. But he never contacted the company again and his whereabouts are still a mystery.

Turner said it is company policy to obtain out-of-town fares up front. He said drivers also should drop off large payments with the company before leaving.

Turner said he discovered one other curious detail when he picked up the cab: It was nearly out of gas even though the gas gauge showed a quarter tank. He said he ran out of gas less than a mile after picking it up.

Turner speculated that whoever was driving the cab might have been heading somewhere else and left it when it would not start up again.

"He must have figured he had more gas in the car," he said.

Turner also said he found the keys underneath he seat.

Turner, who hung out with Bradford, 29, about 10 years ago, said he never struck him as the type of person who would skip town with a cab.

"If he did it, it's stupid. It baffles me," he said. "It's hard to hide in Hagerstown. It's real strange. I don't know what to make of it.

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