Winning bidder in DWI recliner auction says he can't payby Elizabeth Dunbar, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — The man who won an auction for a motorized recliner being sold on eBay has told the Proctor Police Department that he can't pay for the chair, the city's police chief said Tuesday.
That means it's unclear whether police will get the $10,099 winning bid for the recliner, which was seized by police after the chair's owner crashed it into a parked car while drunk.
Police Chief Walter Wobig said he e-mailed the winning bidder last week, letting him know the department expected a $2,000 deposit on the chair within 48 hours. When the deposit didn't come through, Wobig contacted the buyer again. Wobig said he then received an e-mailed apology from the man saying he didn't mean to bid on the chair and could not afford it.
Wobig wasn't impressed with his excuse, and has turned the matter over to the city attorney.
"On eBay, you have to confirm you bid," Wobig said. "At any time he could have withdrawn his bid."
The winning bidder, who is vice president of a computer technology company in Cupertino, Calif., did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
The man had a 100 percent rating as a buyer on eBay, but "he certainly won't have that anymore," Wobig said.