The car theft trend keeps on going…
Early on the morning of January 13, three men showed up at Mathews Dodge with the intention of leaving with a Dodge Challenger Hellcat and Charger Hellcat sitting in the showroom. Instead of paying for the cars, the men stole them, something we see way too often these days. That kind of a heist in the city of Mount Vernon, Ohio is a big deal since it’s not exactly Chicago or Detroit. It also shows this problem of professional car theft rings is spreading to rural America.
Check out a 39-car barn find here.
As you would expect, there is surveillance footage of the heist, but it hasn’t been released to the public. Instead, we just know that the three suspects pulled up in a “silver SUV.” That’s right, no make, model, etc. We’d at least be curious if that SUV was a Mopar, because we’ve seen thieves stealing Dodges while using other Mopars to pull it off, which were probably stolen as well.
The Knox County Sheriff’s Office did reveal other dealerships in nearby counties have been targeted lately. We’ve seen this increasing in many areas since criminals know likely nobody comes by the dealerships in the middle of the night, giving them plenty of time to grab brand new cars.
Some news agencies have blamed the increase in car thefts solely on the pandemic. While that might be a factor, including the resulting increase in vehicle values, there are other things likely driving this behavior as well. Lax bail policies, toned-down prosecution, and the slashing of police department budgets certainly have contributed to criminals feeling they can act with impunity.
With a population under 20,000 Mount Vernon isn’t exactly an epicenter of crime. That’s why the local sheriff’s office is studying the surveillance video and taking the investigation seriously. The last thing anyone wants is criminals deciding the area is a good place to steal more cars or commit other crimes.