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LAPORTE, Colo. — Someone stole a four wheeler from a corner lot in the small Colorado town of Laporte. The man it belongs to is 53 years old and has autism. The four wheeler was his only way to get around.
“He’s sad, he’s upset. He can’t believe it,” the owner’s sister, Jennifer Sprenger, told Denver7.
The owner is Kevin Netik. He drives the Yamaha Rhino utility side-by-side on the dirt roads of his neighborhood. Netik has a high-functioning form of autism.
“It's his lifeline almost,” his sister said. “It’s how he feels independent.”
Sprenger said her brother drives around to visit neighbors, give his nieces rides, and goes door-to-door to sell 4H tickets. He had put the four wheeler up for sale in hopes of buying a new one. He chained it to a tractor along Highway 287B in Laporte with a ‘For Sale’ sign on it.
“Monday morning he came in and said his four wheeler is gone,” his sister said.
Someone had unbolted the seat of the vehicle to remove the chains. They took the four wheeler and left the seat.
“It’s so sad. It really is. It just breaks my heart,” Netik said, looking at the place the vehicle was stolen from.
“They didn’t just take his side-by-side. They took his independence, his freedom,” his sister added.
She told Denver7 her hope is that someone hears about this, realized who they stole from, and returns the four wheeler. If not, she’s hoping for any help she can get to try to replace it.
“Just to get (a four wheeler) back to him and let him ride again and do what he likes to do, that would be everything,” she said.
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