Local News

Dozens of state vehicles vandalized, credit cards stolen

Posted October 9, 2014
Updated October 10, 2014

— 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.


This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • Chuck Harris Oct 10, 2014
    user avatar

    Cancel the cards...duh

  • Sara Hauser Oct 10, 2014
    user avatar

    I don't understand why they were left in the vehicles to start with.

  • southerntalent Oct 10, 2014

    16,000 in fuel? the state must be pretty stupid to allow that to happen

  • tri123 Oct 10, 2014

    View quoted thread

    That's how it's generally done. The guy will say something like that he needs cash but forgot his PIN number or whatever. Can he buy your gas with his credit card and you give him cash. That's how they turn stolen credit cards into cash.

  • Chplhill Oct 10, 2014

    Those State credit cards are a nightmare to try to use. This is someone who knows how to work them. You have to enter a combination of vehicle identification numbers and odometer readings to get them to work. So whoever took them had to know this to use them, and also had to read the odometers before they took the cards. These do not work like regular cards.

  • The_Analyst Oct 10, 2014

    I would assume there is more than one thief using the stolen cards. Still, it shouldn't be TOO hard to run this guy down, unless he's left the area. Image processing should be able to clear that picture up so it can be matched to his driver's license photo.

  • less_govt_is_better_govt Oct 10, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Do not question the Almighty government citizen.....

  • Matthew Behrle Oct 10, 2014
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    My first thought as well...

  • BeKind Oct 10, 2014

    Probable an ex inmate. Traveled in the vehicles and watched the officer use the card for gas. Cards should be issued when the keys are issued for the vehicles instead of being left with the vehicle.

  • sinenomine Oct 10, 2014

    That's a pretty good picture of the guy and his truck. Somebody ought to recognize him.