Dozens of state vehicles vandalized, credit cards stolen
Posted October 9, 2014
Updated October 10, 2014
Raleigh, N.C. — Forty-two state-owned cars and trucks have been vandalized in the past month, and the thieves went on a spending spree with state gas credit cards swiped from inside the vehicles, investigators said Thursday.
State Capitol Police detectives are appealing to the public for help in solving the crimes. They hope someone can identify a man seen on security video using one of the stolen cards to purchase gasoline at a Raleigh convenience store.
Police said the vehicles were parked at several Department of Public Safety locations when passenger-side windows were broken. Two of the cars were destroyed by fire.
More than $16,000 in fuel has been purchased in Wake, Johnston, Wilson and Alamance counties using the stolen credit cards, investigators said.
The break-ins happened Sept. 19 and 2, and again on Wednesday and Thursday. The locations include 3010 Hammond Business Place, 825 S. New Hope Road, 2020 Yonkers Road, 200 Leagan Drive, 404 Tryon Road, 1700 Tryon Road, 100 E. Six Forks Road, 2027 Garner Road and at the New Hope Road Century Center.
The vehicles destroyed by fire were at the South New Hope Road location.
A spokesman with the Department of Public Safety said credit cards were not kept in all the vehicles and were not taken in some cases. Some of the damage happened over the weekend and wasn't discovered until Monday morning, after the stolen cards were used.
"DPS has taken steps to ensure that no cards remain in its fleet vehicles, and all the stolen cards have been canceled," department spokesman Keith Acree said.
Security video taken Sept. 20 at a BP station on South Sanders Street in Raleigh shows a man described as black, in his mid-40s with short hair, black-rimmed glasses and driving a maroon 2003 or 2004 Ford Expedition.
Anyone with information is asked to call State Capitol Police at 919-733-3333.