Thieves made off with $20,000 in tires, rims and equipment during an after-hours heist at a Eureka auto dealership.
Sometime between 1 and 4 a.m. June 26, Mangold Ford at 1110 W. Center St. was burglarized. Two new Ford Super Duty F450 XLT trucks were stripped of their tires and rims.
Each truck had four Alcoa polished, forged aluminum 19.5-inch rims. One truck was outfitted with six 19.5-inch all-season tires. The other was equipped with six 17-inch all terrain tires.
The thieves then hot-wired the dealership’s white Ford F450 dump truck, loaded it with the rims and tires, and left in it.
“Also stolen were license plates, assuming they are now on that 1999 dump truck,” Mangold Ford sales manager Rob Gregoire said. “Illinois truck plate number 376378D.”
Gregoire believes the thieves may have tuned into a police scanner to monitor police activity before burglarizing the dealership.
“The police go through here all the time, they’re very good about that,” he said. “The cops were involved in an arrest, though, and they had a four-hour window of time to do this.”
Auto dealership tire heists aren’t very common but have happened in the area. In 2017, Brian Mims, 56, of Missouri was arrested in Pekin on theft charges in connection to a string of Tazewell County thefts of late-model tires and rims.
Also that year, $25,000 worth of tires and rims were taken from vehicles at Uftring Weston Chevrolet Cadillac in Peoria.
Gregoire said the dealership doesn’t use security cameras. The Eureka Police Department is handling the investigation.
— $20,000 in equipment stolen from Eureka auto dealership —-