JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. – Cars were being stolen left and right in Jefferson County.
Suspects were targeting the same location over and over again. The place is not far from Interstate 55 and Highway Z, in a heavily wooded area in Barnhart.
Neighbors said the salvage yard business has been shut down for years, it appeared criminals were busy ransacking the place.
The salvage yard is secluded. Neighbors said they first saw trucks leaving the old business carrying car parts and pieces of metal. Then it got worse.
“Then we saw them bring out old cars and then started bringing out cars that looked fine to me,” said Paul Collier, who lives nearby.
The sheriff’s department was alerted after the son of the property owner checked out the place for the first time in months. He noticed about 25 vehicles missing.
“You don’t hear about this very often,” said Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Grant Bissell. “This big of chunk over a roughly six month time period, that’s unique.”
It could add up to thousands of dollars worth of stolen property. The metal can be sold for recycling and the car parts reused. Neighbors said the suspects were busy at the business for a long time. It got to the point where he was going every night. You see him going in the morning and leaving in the afternoon and coming back.
We were not able to get a comment from the property owner. Sheriff’s detectives said they’re talking to a person of interest.