Recent lawnmower, golf cart thefts could be linked

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MOORESVILLE, Ind. - At least ten golf carts from one business, and two lawnmowers at another, have come up missing over the last few weeks. The truck used to take the stolen equipment appears to be the same one.

At Haltom Equipment in Mooresville, two lawnmowers in for service were taken early Monday morning. Owner Scott Benko's surveillance cameras caught the truck pulling into his business' street, and leaving, while cameras at nearby storage facility caught the driver of the truck breaking into a fence.

“We have so many mowers here right now that we can’t get them all inside," Benko said. "Some of them have to set out back. We’re fenced, we’re pretty secure and we have cameras. If they want it, they’re going to get it no matter what, unfortunately."

When the owner saw the footage, he knew he had seen the silver or white Ford F-150 before.

"There's a dent on the right side of the bed," said Benko. "Blacked out wheels and the left side on the bed is primer black. It sticks out pretty good."

A truck with the same description was recently spotted in the back of P & P Golf Cars, just five miles southeast of Benko's business, along S.R. 144. The owner at the rural Mooresville golf cart store showed pictures of the truck from security cameras.

She said a neighbor spotted the truck and two men trying to steal golf carts and parts, but the men fled the area. She added the neighbor drove after them, but eventually lost sight of the truck.

Heartland Golf Car, which is further east, along S.R. 37 and north of Martinsville, has seen 11 golf carts stolen. Likely by the same truck, according to general manager Ron McBride.

Over one weekend, the business was stolen from three times. On each occasion, two golf carts were taken. Then a few days later, the business was hit again, this time with a larger trailer attached as the thieves made away with five golf carts.

“It most likely is the same group, and they're pretty bold about it," said McBride. "The break-ins here have been at night time, but we’ve heard of other lawnmower companies and golf car company where they did it in broad daylight on a Saturday morning.”

McBride said one of their stolen vehicles has been located by an employee who was visiting Lake Melissa in Morgan County. He checked the car's identification number, which matched the business' stolen property.

The cart was reported to the Morgan County Sheriff's Office and confiscated, said McBride, but the company does not know if anyone has been arrested or how the cart ended up near the lake.

Anyone who knows more about the truck or who is behind the thefts can call the sheriff's office or Mooresville police.

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