AN INVESTIGATION is underway after thieves stole a ute and took it on a 260 kilometre joyride from Armidale to Inverell.
Police said the white 2015 Mitsubishi Triton was stolen from a Mann Street property on Saturday night, after offenders broke into another vehicle at the home.
“It appears unknown persons have gained access to a red Laser parked on Mann Street, ransacked the vehicle and stolen keys to the other vehicle,” duty officer Inspector Chris McKinnon said.
“The Mitsubishi was consequently taken from the location.”
Police believe the thieves then took the utility on a joyride to Inverell after a debit card, which was in the vehicle, was used at a local roadhouse at about 2.20am on Sunday.
Investigations have revealed further purchases were made using the stolen car in Black Mountain at about 5am.
Inspector McKinnon said officers were then called to a crash involving the stolen ute on Sunday morning after witnesses reported seeing a young man flee the scene.
“The car was involved in an accident on the corner of Mann and Douglas Streets where police found the vehicle on its roof at about 8.30am on Sunday,” he said.
Witnesses are being sought.
THE car theft was one in a string of car break-ins and damages with ten vehicles targeted over the weekend.
Police are working on whether the incidents are linked but Inspector McKinnon reminded residents to be vigilant.
“We are encouraging motorists to ensure their vehicles are properly secure and if they are going to leave cars do it in a well-lit area.” Inspector McKinnon said.
Anyone who spotted the stolen ute on Saturday night or Sunday morning is urged to contact Armidale police on 6771 0699 or CrimeStoppers on 1800 333 000.
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