Dunedin youth detained over string of car thefts

A Mazda Demio. Photo: supplied
A Mazda Demio. Photo: supplied
A Dunedin youth allegedly responsible for a stolen car spree has been apprehended by police.

Senior Sergeant Anthony Bond said the young person police were seeking regarding a spate of stolen vehicles overnight had been apprehended in Mosgiel about 1.30pm.

Police had been making inquiries to locate the suspected offender, who was apprehended while allegedly trying to get back into a stolen vehicle. 

Seven Mazda Demios and one Honda Civic had been stolen since yesterday afternoon.

The youth would be interviewed regarding the stolen cars and the case would be followed up by Youth Aid, Snr Sgt Bond said.

Figures released by insurance company AMI in March showed the Mazda Demio was the most commonly stolen car in the country.

A police spokesman earlier said officers were actively looking for the young person responsible for the thefts.

The cars were stolen from addresses across the city, including Fairfield, Port Chalmers, South Dunedin and the CBD.

It appeared the person responsible had stolen a car and driven it around searching for another Mazda Demio to steal.

"[They] probably pull up behind the other car, steals the one in front. So we've discovered cars that haven't been reported stolen yet because we found them when we've made inquiries at the people who have reported them stolen."

Police recommended people who own Mazda Demios to secure their vehicles with a steering wheel lock.

Meanwhile, an 18-year-old male was stopped on Hawthorn Ave at 3.30pm yesterday afternoon.

A bong was spotted in the footwell of the car, leading to a search of the vehicle in which a second bong and a small amount of marijuana was found in the vehicle.

The driver was given a warning and the drug paraphernalia was confiscated for destruction.

At 6.20pm police were called to a dog attack in Bruntsfield Pl.

A 30 year old male had been attacked by a dog  and received a severe injury to his right calf as well as puncture wounds to his arms.

Dog control had been advised of the incident.