The owners of a 2010 Bobcat Model E32 mini-excavator contacted the Fayetteville Police Department to report that their vehicle was stolen from a job site off Hoke Mills Road. The renting contractor had left the vehicle on the job site at approximately 6PM. They returned to the job site the next morning around 7AM to discover the mini-excavator missing. Neither evidence, nor witness to the crime was known at the time of the theft report.
The Fayetteville PD verified the theft and entered the vehicle information into the state and federal crime computers which automatically activated the LoJack® System concealed in the Bobcat.
The North Carolina DMV License & Theft Bureau Inspectors were given information the mini-excavator might be an extended distance from the theft location. A coordinated search for the mini-excavator was begun by the Inspectors. A short while later an Inspector from the NCDMV License & Theft Bureau picked up the silent LoJack signal from the stolen Bobcat min-excavator with the LoJack Police Tracking Computers (PTC) that are installed in patrol vehicles and aircraft. Following the directional and audible cues from the PTC, the Inspectors tracked the Bobcat to a residence near the Clement Fire Department on Maxwell Road, outside of Autryville, NC; over (26) miles from the theft site in Fayetteville.
An adult resident of the home gave Inspectors consent to view a Bobcat Model E32 mini-excavator parked in the back yard. All rental company decals and identifying equipment numbers had been removed; however the manufacture’s assigned serial number confirmed the LoJack track. The same adult provided additional information to indicate the equipment had been delivered, at approximately 5:30AM, to the home on the morning after what is now known as the night of the theft. Money, in the amount of $3,500.00, was paid at the time of delivery. Other area witnesses gave information of seeing a male person operating the min-excavator the same day, working on a dirt driveway going to the residence were the Bobcat was recovered.
Persons receiving and delivering the Bobcat have been interviewed. A named fourth person implicated in the theft of the mini-excavator has not been found and interviewed at this time. The investigation continues with pending charges for felony possession of stolen property on the three persons involved with delivering and receiving. Similar charges and probably a felony larceny charge will be brought on the fourth person.
The LoJack® System was installed in the Bobcat Model E32 mini-excavator in December 2010 by the rental company in Winston Salem, North Carolina.