Thefts like smash-and-grabs have been on the rise across the country. Auto thefts have also spiked during the pandemic, with brazen car thieves stealing vehicles straight from the dealership. It happened to one local Greensboro, North Carolina-area dealer, that had over $200,000 in vehicles was stolen and nearly all the dealer’s keys, Fox 8 reports.
Surveillance video from the morning of Jan. 23 showed a group of three individuals smashing the front window of Rameriz Automotive. The thieves got away with six vehicles:
- 2015 Chevy Corvette
- Range Rover
- GMC Yukon Denali
- Chevy Silverado
- Jaguar XK
- Ram 3500 Dually
The owner of the dealership, Jose Ramirez, found the damage and the vehicles missing when he arrived the next morning. He says he’s frustrated as he’s trying to do right by the local community. From Fox 8:
It’s really frustrating, and it’s really sad to be in that situation. I’m out here trying to help out the community and be able to provide affordable vehicles for the community, not bothering anyone, not hurting anybody.
We’re a community, we shouldn’t be trying to hurt each other. We should try to help each other through whatever situation.
With the investigation ongoing, an outpouring of local and online support did the cop’s jobs better than they could — actually helping track down the stolen vehicles. The thieves had to have been dumb or sloppy, as five of the six cars were found in the parking lot of an apartment complex just a mile from the dealership. The Corvette was the last of the vehicles found, ending up on a street two miles from the dealer.
While Ramirez is happy the vehicles were recovered, there’s still the matter of the missing 33 keys. He has a locksmith helping him replace them, but it’s going to cost $10,000. Ramirez adds he’s going to implement new security measures for the dealer and hopes that crime against local businesses stops.