Tampa Mayor's Yukon Denali Was Once A Pimpmobile (Allegedly)

August 29, 2011
2005 GMC Yukon Denali used by Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn

2005 GMC Yukon Denali used by Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn

When Bob Buckhorn was sworn in as mayor of Tampa, Florida last April, he nobly decided to pick his city vehicle from the police department's forfeiture fleet. Unfortunately, most of the rides on the lot were luxury class, and given the state of the economy, the new mayor wanted to project a more working-class image. One of the few vehicles to fit Buckhorn's bill was a black 2005 GMC Yukon Denali.

Apart from the fact that the Denali gets fairly lousy gas mileage -- around 14 mpg -- it's a good match for the mayor: it's nice but not "luxury", it's in good shape, and it only has around 100,000 miles on the odometer. It's also big enough to handle Buckhorn's family and the sizable staff with whom he sometimes travels. The only downside is that the Denali was confiscated from accused pimp Charles "Boogy" Melvin Fox.

Police began investigating Fox last fall and took the Denali from him on September 28. Although Fox was given the chance to challenge the SUV's seizure, he didn't, and the vehicle officially became city property in March. Apart from removing the spinners that Fox had put on the rims, police say they didn't make any changes to the SUV before handing the keys to Mayor Buckhorn.

We hope, however, that they gave detectives a chance to sift through the Denali for evidence. Fox was charged last month with sex trafficking, sexual battery, and forcing at least one woman to become a prostitute against her will. According to police and one of Fox's alleged former prostitutes, Fox used the SUV as a rolling office, driving sex workers to various assignations and stashing their wages in the car, too. Although other details are sketchy at this point, we imagine that these activities might be just the tip of the pimpmobile's iceberg.

We mention this not because of any iffy circumstances surrounding the Denali's confiscation -- though such seizures can be controversial. Says Tampa police spokeswoman, Laura McElroy, "You don't need to file a criminal charge to seize a vehicle; you just need to believe it was used in criminal activity or was bought with proceeds of criminal activity." 

No, we mention this solely as a reminder that you never really know where used cars have been. We've all seen the TV exposes where reporters sneak into high-end hotels and use blacklights to show just how much gunk the housekeeping staff leaves behind. If Buckhorn is a clean freak, he might want to avoid inviting the Nightline team over for a visit.


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