Tonganoxie youth detained in car theft
A 17-year-old Tonganoxie male is in custody in Mesa, Ariz., where authorities have located the last of six cars stolen from Tonganoxie residences last week.
The other five cars were found in the Tonganoxie area.
Tonganoxie Police Sgt. John Putthoff said Monday that a 1995 Chevrolet 4X4 truck stolen Nov. 20 was located in Mesa on Saturday morning.
Putthoff said he believed but had no confirmation yet that other individuals were in Arizona with the Tonganoxie juvenile.
The recent string of vehicle thefts began early in the morning on Nov. 19 when two vehicles were stolen. It continued through last Wednesday night when four more were stolen.
Late in the afternoon on Nov. 19, one of the vehicles, a 1989 Pontiac Grand Am, was found about six miles southeast of Tonganoxie, parked in the middle of a soybean field. Another, a 1998 Jeep Wrangler, was found Nov. 19 near the high school. Both had damaged hoods and broken windshields, Putthoff said.
Two of the cars taken on Nov. 20, a Cavalier and a Ford Tempo, were found north of Tonganoxie on Wednesday. These were not damaged, except for a flat tire on one of the vehicles.
Another vehicle, a 1990 Chevy pickup truck, was found Friday in Tonganoxie behind City Ford.
In all of the thefts, Putthoff said, the vehicles were parked outside and all but one had the doors unlocked. All of the cars had a key in the vehicle. The cars were all stolen within the city limits.
Putthoff advises area drivers to lock their vehicles. This would help decrease the number of thefts of items, as well as thefts of cars.
"We get a lot of vehicle burglaries and in the majority of the cases the doors are unlocked," Putthoff said. "People should at least take the valuables out of their cars."