INDIANAPOLIS — A car thief swiped a vehicle in broad daylight from a family on the near east side of Indy. What that crook didn’t know is the vehicle has been in their family for generations.
The 1987 Ford F-150 spent most of its 35 years on a watermelon farm in Huntsville, Alabama. Madeline Hutchins says it belonged to her husband’s 99-year-old grandfather.
“He drove it to and from his watermelon farm, so it has very low mileage on it, about 56,000 miles,” said Hutchins. “It’s been desired. We have had many people try to buy it off of us. My husband, as do I, have a huge sentimental attachment to the truck.”
Two weeks ago a thief stole it from in front of their home near the corner of North Highland Avenue and East St. Clair Street. Surveillance cameras spotted the suspect loading the truck onto a trailer before taking off. The incident lasted about ten minutes.
“It didn’t seem like the regular theft of a car. It seemed like somebody had been watching it, paying attention when we weren’t home,” detailed Hutchins. ” They came fully prepared with a trailer and a wench.”
Hutchins says her neighbor’s Jeep was also stolen using a trailer. Since the start of April, police reports show there have been six car thefts within ten blocks of their home. So far, police have not made any connections between these incidents.
“Our investigators may see where we have had multiple break-ins or multiple auto thefts in one area, that’s always an alert to that being a one suspect,” detailed Indianapolis Metropolitan Police (IMPD) Officer William Young. “It’s major whenever we have surveillance. A lot of the time some investigations are finding a needle in a haystack.”
Office Young suggests homeowners park their cars in a well lit area, or inside a garage if possible. If your vehicle happens to be stolen, be sure to inform police of any distinct markings.
“There are stickers on the back windshield of a Blackhawks sticker and an Auburn University sticker,” described Hutchins. “I want to find it. I very much want to find it.”