News4JAX, December 21, 2021
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The owners of a Jacksonville towing company that has been used by local law enforcement agencies were arrested Monday and accused of fraud.
Gregory Gaylord, 64, and Garrison Gaylord, 29, owners of Southern Wrecker & Recovery, were arrested for organized fraud by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office as the result of an investigation into overbilling customers and clients.
Both JSO and the Florida Highway Patrol had been using the company in their call rotation to tow away vehicles involved in crashes. Both agencies have stopped working with the company.
“To be on that list for your local and your state, department’s such as JSO and FHP, is a very coveted list,” said News4JAX crime and safety expert Ken Jefferson.
In a warning letter to Southern Wrecker & Recovery in 2020 obtained by News4JAX, FHP listed multiple cases in which people were billed for unauthorized charges and warned that if it continued, the company would be removed from FHP’s rotation.
According to the letter, the towing company overcharged FHP 18 times from July 2020 to October 2020.
The Gaylords have been released after posting $75,000 bonds.