COLLINSVILLE, IL (KPLR) - A Metro East car dealership was ripped off to the tune of $50,000, while another $50,000 in damages happened during the theft. It is tough to secure everything at a big dealership like Laura Buick GMC, the second most successful GM dealer in the nation that’s located in Collinsville.
Collinsville Police Major Brett Boerm said, “My belief would be that there’s some sort of aftermarket sales going on with these wheels I mean they’re very expensive.”
Major Boerm released surveillance photos that show the suspects were driving a red Chevrolet GMC pickup and an early 2000’s model Ford passenger van. They stole the tires and rims from 10 GMC Yukon Denali SUV’s. The cost of those wheels is about $50,000. Boerm added that, “When they’re committing these thefts they’re actually damaging the vehicle in the process.”
He said they put cinder blocks under the vehicles’ automatic running boards, deflated the tires and all the weight rest on the running boards. That caused another $50,000 in damages.
Motorists like Jennifer Stauffer said, “That anyone would feel so entitled that they would come along and do that to a local company is sad.”
It’s believed the thieves may be responsible for similar crimes in a total of seven towns in Kansas, Missouri and Illinois.
A spokesman at the car dealership declined to comment. He indicated the vehicles have been repaired.