That Time Rod Stewart’s Porsche Was Stolen at Gunpoint
Rod Stewart was doing some shopping on Hollywood’s famed Sunset Boulevard when he found himself in a dangerous situation. On April 26, 1982, Stewart approached his parked car on a side street when he was met by an armed gunman, who demanded the keys to the car – a 1977 Porsche Turbo-Carrera.
Stewart, accompanied by his 3-year-old daughter Kimberly and his secretary Martha Baher, surrendered the car keys in an attempt to keep everyone safe. But just when he thought the incident was over, the assailant was out of the car and again pointing his gun at the singing star.
“He came back and said, ‘I can’t start the car’,” Stewart told Access Hollywood years later. “So at gunpoint, I had to walk out on a side street with a gun in my back and get in the car and start it for him. It started on a button.”
Fortunately for Stewart and his companions, the ordeal ended without any violence – just the three of them stranded on the curb in the bright daylight of Southern California. The thief had made off with Stewart’s wallet, shopping items and the Porsche, valued at $50,000. After Stewart gained his wits, he called the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Office about the incident. “There is every indication that the gunman did not know that his victim was Rod Stewart,” Sheriff’s Deputy John Radeleff said in the New York Daily News. “The make of the car is a pretty hot item with thieves in this area. Mr. Stewart has been highly cooperative.”
The scary incident would play a role in Stewart’s move from California back to the U.K. The mugging, combined with another armed robbery that was suffered by his Los Angeles neighbor, made him wary for his safety.
“After being robbed myself not long ago, I have the feeling that violence in America is getting worse,” Stewart told The New York Times a month later. “It will be a lot worse this summer.”
It wouldn’t be the last time a vehicle was stolen from Stewart. In 2004, a fired laborer working on the singer’s Florida estate, decided to take off with his Dodge Viper.