Man carjacked at Sanford car dealership

- A Sanford car salesman says he feared for his life after he was carjacked a knife point during a test drive.

“The only thing that I was concerned about too was my pregnant wife – she’s six months pregnant,” said Nino Villanueva, who works at Mastro Subaru.

Deputies say 26-year-old Allen Pendergrass came in to look at used cars over the weekend. Villanueva says he seemed calm and friendly at first – even handing over his driver’s license before test driving a red Hyundai hatchback.

With Pendergrass driving, investigators say the two men headed up Highway 17-92 toward Lake Mary Boulevard on a test drive.

“That’s when he grabbed the knife and told me to get out of the car,” Villanueva said. “While the knife was you now, on my face like right here, very close and right to my chest.”

Villanueva says he got out of the car and tried hitting the suspect with the temporary license plate off the back before he pulled off.

Deputies say Pendergrass was later stopped by Lake Mary Police and arrested.

“Very glad that we at least got one bad guy off the streets,” Villanueva said.

The salesman, who just started working at the dealership two weeks ago says the whole thing will not keep him from doing his job.

“It could happen to anyone – it was just coincidence that it was me,” Villanueva said.

Deputies say Pendergrass, who's from Dallas, is charged with armed carjacking, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and grand theft of a motor vehicle.

 

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