Man arrested in stolen car after going to courthouse to pay taxes

Sheriff’s deputies arrested an alleged car thief Thursday after he drove a stolen vehicle to the Platte County Courthouse to pay his personal property taxes.

The Platte County sheriff’s office said Shawn M. Simmer, 38, of Platte City, was arrested after attempting to drive away in a 1985 Chevrolet Celebrity that had been reported stolen in Gladstone.

According to the sheriff’s office, Simmer was in the courthouse in Platte City paying his taxes when a deputy walking outside spotted a lost cellphone on the ground near the car. In an effort to find out who the phone belonged to, the deputy called in the car’s license plate number to dispatchers.

That’s when they learned the car was stolen. A short time later, Simmer got in and started to drive away. Deputies didn’t let him get far.

On Friday, prosecutors charged him in Platte County Circuit Court with first-degree tampering with a motor vehicle. Bond was set at $10,000. He was being held Friday in the Platte County jail.