Rental Company Employees Arrested in Bill Dispute

Maria Diaz called police after she was held hostage at Signature Rent-A-Car in Orlando during a dispute over a bill. Clark Girges, president of Signature Rent-A-Car, and Juan Encarnacion, an employee of Signature, were arrested.

According to the arrest affidavit, Diaz was returning a vehicle to Signature Rent-A-Car and had an issue with her billing statement. When discussing her billing charges, Diaz stated that Encarnacion started to argue about her keys that were still on the rental car key ring, according to the arrest affidavit.

Officer Benjamin Bates, who responded to Diaz’s call, observed a bright red scratch on her left arm that she claimed Encarnacion caused during their struggle.

Diaz said that she was forced into a room at the Signature facility and denied multiple attempts to leave, according to the arrest affidavit. Diaz stated that there were other people in the room and Encarnacion assaulted her.

Encarnacion told Officer Bates that Diaz was at the business for hours and would not leave. He stated that she refused to return the rental keys and was causing commotion in the lobby, according to the arrest affidavit.

Encarnacion claimed that he entered the room where Diaz was being held and grabbed the keys out of her hand. He then said that she hit him on the chest multiple times and he had to be held back by his co-workers, according to the affidavit.

Girges told Officer Bates that he was reviewing the bill with Diaz for an extended period of time. Girges stated that Diaz took the rental keys from his office and was going to walk out, so he closed the door until she gave him the car keys.

Officer Bates reviewed video surveillance where Girges is seen with his hand on the door not allowing Diaz to leave. According to the affidavit, Officer Bates then saw Encarnacion enter the room and snatch the keys from Diaz, striking her in the left arm as she was backed into a small corner of the room and surrounded by at least seven Signature employees.

"After an extended discussion at the front counter, Ms. Diaz was invited into an interior office of the rental location to further the conversation while simultaneously allowing other waiting customers to be serviced," said a corporate representative of Signature Rent-A-Car. "Despite every effort to accommodate Ms. Diaz, she remained dissatisfied and refused to relinquish the keys to the rented vehicle. Signature Rent-A-Car denies that Ms. Diaz was a victim of any criminal conduct by its employees."  

Based on the evidence from the video and sworn written statements by Diaz, Officer Bates placed Girges and Encarnacion under arrest. Girges is accused of false imprisonment while Encarnacion faces charges of battery.


  1. Carl E. [ February 8, 2017 @ 01:38PM ]

    Very surprised Economy has continued with them as an affiliate. Seems like this operation is willing to do just about anything, considering the same company was written up here for allegedly vandalizing the cars of a competitor about a month ago. It has to be difficult to decide when to pull the plug on a presumably busy location that is damaging the brand through service issues and incidents like this.

  2. Rhonda Smith [ February 15, 2017 @ 09:08PM ]

    I have used this rental establishment throughout several business trips to Orlando, and have always had a tremendous experience with this location. I am positive this news article is incorrect.

  3. anonymous [ February 16, 2017 @ 02:35PM ]

    This news isn't false.. google them and you'll see how shady they do business ... 1 star on google, yelp, BBB, etc isn't a mistake... WAKE UP!

  4. Josh Zervakos [ July 17, 2017 @ 07:16AM ]

    100% true. A week or 2 prior they tried to force me into a office. Had to call uber and do a charge back.

Comment On This Story

Comment: (Max. 10000 characters)  
Please leave blank:
* Please note that every comment is moderated.


Newsletter: Sign up to receive latest news, articles, and much more.

Read the latest

Auto Focus Blog: A blog covering fleets, auto rental and the business of cars

What a Connected Fleet Means to Avis (and Car Rental)

Counter bypass is just the beginning. The promise of a “data-driven ecosystem” that connects renters with the rental agency, retail services, and even the city is a better managed fleet, an improved user experience, and new revenue opportunities during the rental itself.

Should Peer-to-Peer Renters Pay Airport Car Rental Fees?

The question is central to the City of San Francisco’s lawsuit against Turo for operating without a permit at San Francisco International Airport.

Hard Times Ahead for the Compact SUV Segment?

The hottest segment today is facing a glut of models and volume in tomorrow’s wholesale market.

Job Finder: Access Top Talent. Fill Key Positions.