Joy rides, thefts and trashed cars: Thieves target vehicles in Prebbleton

A Prebbleton resident found his son’s car crashed near a creek after it was stolen the previous...
A Prebbleton resident found his son’s car crashed near a creek after it was stolen the previous evening. Photo: Supplied
Prebbleton residents are on high alert after thieves stole and broke into several vehicles last week.

One car was stolen and then crashed on a joy ride, while another had its window carefully cut out and $1400 of tools removed.

"How do you prevent someone doing it in the middle of the night with no-one around to really stop them?" resident Craig Symon said.

He found his teenage son’s car crashed near a creek on Raineys Rd, between Prebbleton and Lincoln, on Tuesday morning last week.

The Mazda Demio went missing overnight from where it was parked on the street outside their home at the corner of Conductors and Coachmans Rds. It appeared the thieves then took it for a joy ride.

"You could see all the skid marks on the gravel road, they have lost control and gone down the bank," Symon said.

The rubber seal around Mason Westwood’s Toyota Land Cruiser was cut so the window could be...
The rubber seal around Mason Westwood’s Toyota Land Cruiser was cut so the window could be removed and the tools stolen. Photo: Supplied
He found the car about 9.30am after another resident alerted him to its whereabouts on the Prebbleton Community Facebook page.

Residents also commented on two other incidents from the same night.

One said a Toyota Surf was broken into, while another reported her car window was smashed and the ignition barrel broken.

CCTV footage of the latter incident was posted on the page. It shows two suspects, who appear to be young and wearing hoodies, walking on the street.

The following night, apprentice builder Mason Westwood had his 1994 Toyota Land Cruiser on Charles St broken into.

It had its rear window removed after the rubber seal was cut, and about $1400 of power tools were stolen.

Westwood said the theft followed another incident just a month ago. On that occasion, he had another vehicle parked in the same spot on the street outside his home. It had its window smashed and the ignition barrel broken.

Westwood said he had been in the process of changing insurance companies, so the tools taken in the latest incident were not covered.

"You spend so much of your time working really hard for your money, and you have to spend a lot of your money on tools and equipment.

"It’s a real low blow when someone can just seemingly break into your vehicle so easily and nick off with it all," Westwood said.

He did not know if the theft was related to the break-ins from the previous evening. But he does not think it was young people doing it for thrills, rather someone was targeting valuable items so they could sell them.

He often needs to park his car on the street, but said from now on he will remove all his tools from the vehicle every evening to keep them safe.

Senior Sergeant Dean Harker said Prebbleton was not being targeted by car thieves.

Mason Westwood. Photo: Supplied
Mason Westwood. Photo: Supplied

"However, if thieves find a location where property is inside vehicles they probably try to get into other vehicles in the area," Harker said.

Police are still investigating and are making further inquiries in relation to youths suspected of carrying out a large number of recent vehicle crimes.

During another spate of vehicle thefts in Selwyn last month, some of the stolen vehicles were used to ram parked vehicles.

"What residents can do is look at their own security, for example, cameras and alarms on vehicles," Harker said.

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