GREESNBURG (KDKA) – It sounds like more trouble than it is worth, but police say it is easier than you may think.
Someone appears to be stealing tailgates off of pickup trucks. Now, surveillance video is providing some clues.
The suspect was quick and Pennsylvania State Police believe he knew what he was after.
In just minutes, the tailgate of a pickup truck can easily be pulled off. That is exactly what a suspect did Saturday night in Westmoreland County.
The suspect pulled into Hollywood Cars on Route 30 in Greensburg, and snatched the tailgate off a pickup truck.
“Five minutes, he is out of there. He is really smart, and he pulled right up to the vehicle,” Joe Henry said.
At 3 a.m. on Saturday, surveillance cameras captured the get away van.
Pennsylvania State Police are looking for a white cargo van with tinted windows and a pinstripe running along the bottom of the van.
The video also shows the driver backing out of the lot instead of pulling through. As a result, police think that the thief may have known about the security cameras and could have been staking out the lot.
“The fact that he backs away is something that we might look into. Why did he do that? Did he know there is surveillance? Is he familiar with the area?” Trooper Stephen Limani said.
Hollywood Cars was not the suspect’s only stop. He hit two other dealerships, stealing 10 tailgates. The total worth of the tailgates is about $15,000.
“During the course of the day, we received phone calls from two other dealerships, and they had reported multiple tailgates being removed from their vehicles,” Trooper Limani said.
The dealership owners are thankful that insurance will cover the loss and are hoping their surveillance video will help with an arrest.
“Now we’ve got a description of it. And hopefully, he gets caught. Because this costs a lot of money. They are anywhere from $800 to $1,000 for one tailgate,” Henry said.
Police believe the suspect may live in the immediate area and are asking for anyone with information to give them a call.