Butler County

Owner of auto repair shop in Cranberry Township accused of driving, renting out customer vehicles

CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. — The owner of a Cranberry Township repair shop is accused of renting out customers’ vehicles and driving them around when he was supposed to be fixing them.

Keith Smith is also accused of taking money for the repairs he never made.

State police charged Smith, who owns Oilology on Route 228. Police said a victim dropped off his car at Oilology on three separate occasions last year for the same check engine light on. The victim paid Smith more than $1,300 for work that wasn’t done, according to court documents.

In the criminal complaint, state police said in total, 4,688 miles were unlawfully put on the victim’s car while Smith had it, and it was damaged with dents, scratches and scuff marks.

A second victim told police she gave Smith her car to fix after she hit a deer. He had the car for four months and during that time, 1,333 miles were put on her car.

Police said Smith unlawfully rented the second victim seven different vehicles, including the first victim’s car.

Only Channel 11 was there when Cranberry Township police cruisers showed up to Smith’s shop for a separate incident on Tuesday.

A man said he called police after he showed up to the shop, trying to get his truck and money back from Smith. Bob Matuzak said he left his truck at Smith’s shop in January for repairs and paid Smith $700, but his vehicle was never fixed.

“This guy lied to me and trying to cheat me out of $700,” said Matuzak. “I’ve brought my vehicles here for oil changes and stuff for years and always had a good rapport. That’s why I gave him the $700 up front but in hindsight, you can’t trust anyone. What a shame.”

Channel 11 went to the business to question Smith, but he had no comment.

State police charged Smith with theft by deception, receiving stolen property and unauthorized use of vehicles. Channel 11 checked with Cranberry Township police to see if they will also be filing charges. They are still investigating.

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