Police investigating ‘similar’ thefts at Chevy, Toyota, Mercedes dealerships – Island Packet

Posted: Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The theft of a $70,000 Range Rover from an Okatie Chevrolet dealership last week could be related to recent thefts from Beaufort County dealerships, authorities say.

The Range Rover was stolen from Mike Reichenbach Chevrolet on July 1 and was recovered in Savannah, according to Jasper County Sheriff Gregory B. Jenkins. The manner of the theft, he said, had “similarities” to thefts of another car and key fobs at Stokes Brown Toyota, Hilton Head BMW and Mercedes-Benz of Hilton Head, all located near Bluffton.

Jenkins said his department was sharing information with Beaufort County officials. He and Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Capt. Bob Bromage said their agencies were investigating the crimes as related incidents.

Savannah’s WTOC reported two men spent about an hour on with employees at Mike Reichenbach Chevrolet in Okatie asking questions about cars. During that time, one of the men appears to have taken a set of keys sitting on a desk inside the dealership, according to surveillance footage aired by the TV station.

After the dealership closed, one of the men returned to the lot and stole the vehicle, the station reported.

A Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office report said a $400 “remote key” to a “2017 Mercedes SUV” was stolen July 7 from Mercedes-Benz of Hilton Head in a similar manner.

Surveillance footage shows “two younger black males” in the dealership, the report said. One of the men appears to distract the sales staff while the other takes the key.

The report also referenced incidents “similar in nature” at Hilton Head BMW and Stokes Brown Toyota.

A 2015 white Jeep Wrangler valued at $29,000 was discovered missing from the Toyota dealership’s lot on July 8, Bromage said. A deputy responded to the scene and, after leaving it, went to the nearby BMW dealership to advise it of the theft.

Once at the second dealership, the deputy learned that a “key fob” to a BMW X5 had gone missing the same day. The dealership had not reported the missing key, Bromage said, praising the deputy for his proactive initiative.

Bromage said sales staff at the BMW dealership told the deputy that three black males and one black female had come into the dealership and appeared to look for cameras and act suspicious before the key went missing.

“If you see something, say something,” Bromage said, referring to suspicious behavior. “Notify law enforcement and give us an opportunity to investigate and determine what’s going on. Don’t assume someone else will call.”


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