A theft ring operating out of New Orleans East is suspected of attempting to steal four vehicles over the weekend in St. Charles Parish.
“We strongly suspect that this is the work of an out-of-parish crime group that ‘swooped’ into St. Charles Parish,” said Sheriff Greg Champagne. “Detectives are working the case hard looking for leads and comparing notes with surrounding agencies.”
Thieves attempted to take the vehicles by punching out the driver’s side door and hotwiring them after breaking the steering column covers, according to Champagne.
“They were unsuccessful in driving away with any of the four automobiles, but substantially damaged all four,” Champagne said.
The break-ins likely occurred in the middle of the night June 5 – 6 on Wade Street, Allison Drive and River Oaks Drive, all in Luling, and Magnolia Manor in Boutte. The vehicles were: 1999 Ford F-150, 2006 Dodge Ram, 2010 Dodge Ram and 2002 Dodge Durango.
According to police reports:
– The window was shattered on the truck on Manor Road, the ignition switch broken and CDs stolen worth more than $500.
– On Allison Drive, the driver side door of the vehicle was damaged in an apparent attempted theft of the vehicle
-The vehicle lock was punched in and the steering column broken in another apparent attempt to steal the vehicle on River Oaks Drive.
– On Wade Street, the steering column was broken in an attempt to steal the vehicle.
Sheriff’s Office spokesman Capt. Patrick Yoes said there have been past similar crimes in the parish that were linked to a theft ring in New Orleans East, which is under investigation again with the recent attempted auto thefts.
Anyone with any information about the attempted vehicle thefts should contact Det. Joseph Dewhirst (985) 783-6807 or call 911.