Smith says that even he feels badly for the people he catches illegally disposing of their cars because he realized just how desperate they've become.
"A lot of the time these people are normal, run of the mill folks who are just panicking because they're trying to take care of their families and they've put themselves between a rock and a hard place with their home and vehicles.
"For a lot of these people the choice becomes feeding their family or making their car payments," he added. "A lot of them are first-time criminals -- those are the ones you really feel for."
Quiggle says he has mixed feelings toward people who try to game the insurance companies.
"These are normally honest people who wouldn't steal a candy bar from a grocery store," he said. "They're trying to make it in a terrible economy and too often their finances are ruined and they're driven to the edge. They're resorting to a stupid and ill-thought out crime as a last resort."
Sometimes the owners are injured in the process. Quiggle said a Las Vegas man recently poured gasoline into his car and lit it with a match. But the gasoline exploded in his face and he suffered second and third degree burns that landed him in the hospital.
"People are just destroying their lives in an attempt to illegally bail themselves out."
Avoid repossession at all costs.
When your car is repossessed you still have to pay the loan off, plus your credit is ruined for up to seven years.
Instead, immediately contact your lender and try to work out a deal with lower monthly payments.
Trade car in
You could also try to trade your car in for a much cheaper one. This is tough if you owe more on your car than it is worth, but it will work if you choose a much more modest vehicle.
Another option is a short sale in which you sell the car yourself and give the money to the lender and they agree to write off the difference without dinging your credit.
And finally, if you lease your car, you may be able to transfer your lease to somebody else, as long as your lender allows this.
Check out the links below for information on how to get out of a car loan or lease.