Thieves had to transfer their loot to a new truck after their getaway vehicle crashed fleeing from a break and enter Friday.
On July 15 at 4:25 a.m., Campbell river RCMP were dispatched to a report of a break and enter to Campbell River Collateral in the 800 block of Island Highway. Scene examination and witness interviews confirmed that three male suspects had broken into the business using a black Dodge Ram truck and chains to extract property from the premises, Sgt Craig Massey said. In the course of this offence the suspects caused considerable damage.
The suspects were witnessed fleeing the area with an assortment of jewelry and stolen property. Minutes later, police were alerted that a black Dodge truck had crashed into a Ford Explorer and that three males were now offloading goods from the Dodge truck to a grey Chevrolet pick up.
Responding officers attended to 5th and Thulin and assisted the operator of the Explorer. Investigators learned that the grey Chevrolet had then sped off northbound on Thulin Street.
This stolen vehicle was subsequently located in the parking lot of City Hall on Alder Street.
“It appears the group responsible for these crimes had prepared in advance, stealing vehicles and parking them at a variety of locations should they be engaged by police,” Sgt. Massey said. “The reckless efforts to flee the area and disregard for other area residents is of particular concern to police. Police are asking the public to assist them in identifying the persons responsible for this offence. “
Later this same day the proprietor of the Ocean Grove store reported a second set of chains laid out in front of that business suggesting it was also a target location.
Investigators have determined that this criminal cell plans in advance, often stealing vehicles days in advance. These vehicles are then parked in a variety of locations that the suspects can access should they be interrupted.
Area residents are encouraged to contact police should they observe vehicles in their neighbourhoods that are not known to them.