The New Windsor Police Department announces the arrest of a local Tow Truck / Auto Body Shop owner for providing false information on several New York State Department of Motor Vehicle documents. The body shop owner then caused those falsified documents to be filed on his behalf, in order to take ownership of a motor vehicle that was originally in his possession for repairs.
The eight month long investigation, led by New Windsor Detectives, revealed that the business owner - Patrick J. Torpey, age 53, who is the owner of 20th Century Towing and 21st Century Auto Body on Union Ave in New Windsor, had a 1978 Porsche 911 at his business for repairs in 2012. The Porsche was being repaired at his business, when the vehicle’s owner died unexpectedly. In the weeks that followed, Torpey filed a NYSDMV Garagemans Lein on the vehicle, requiring him to complete the NYSDMV documents for filing. This then generated a new Title of Ownership for Torpey. It is alleged that this is when Torpey provided the false information on the required documents. Torpey also did so, at a time when the owner’s spouse, whom Torpey was personally familiar with, was looking for the vehicle, as she was the administrator of her husband’s estate. It is alleged that Torpey purposely kept the vehicle from the owner’s spouse, so that he could take ownership of the vehicle for himself. It was not until last summer that the vehicle’s whereabouts were discovered and Torpey’s fraudulent activity was revealed.
Torpey was arrested at his residence this morning and charged with 1 count of Grand Larceny 3rd (D-Felony); 1 count of Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument 2nd (D-Felony); 5 counts of Falsifying Business Records 1st (E-Felony); 4 counts of Offering a False Instrument for Filing 1st (E-Felony) and 1 Count of Perjury 2nd (E-Felony).
Torpey was arraigned this morning in front of New Windsor Town Justice – Hon. Richard Thorpe and bail was set in the amount of $2500. Torpey was later released, after posting the bail. The Porsche was recovered from a garage at Torpey’s residence and is currently being held by the New Windsor Police Department, pending prosecution.
Also assisting in the investigation were members of the Putnam County District Attorney’s Office and Investigators from the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles.
A criminal charge is merely an allegation that a defendant has committed a violation of the criminal law, and it is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial, during which it will be the State of New York’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt