Major Auto Theft At Local Dealership


A theft at a local auto dealership overnight sounds eerily similar to crimes hitting dealerships around southern and eastern Ontario.

Seven vehicles were driven off the lot from Petawawa Toyota.

Four of them are 2019 Toyota Tacoma 4x4 trucks: grey, silver, black and white.

Three of them are 2019 Toyota Highlanders:  one black and two white.

General Manager Mike Douglas says there's video suggesting it may have happened somwhere around 3:00 a.m., which has now been handed over to the police.

He says the total value of the vehicles is around $400,000, and he's heard of similar thefts at dealerships all along the Highway 401 corridor from Guelph to the Quebec border, but never here in the Valley.

Douglas says there have been stories about thieves visiting lots the night before, and obtaining a way to electronically access the vehicles before making off with them in the dead of night.  He thinks a simliar story may have played out here.

"They pre-program the vehicles the night before, they come back and take the ones they programmed, and they drive them away", Douglas told Pure Country 96.7's Tony Grace on Thursday morning.

"All the keys are still here", Douglas added.

"They were driven off the lot and driven away.  What we're looking for, or hoping for, is that someone saw something.  They left through our back exit.  This is a gang, this is organized crime.  They've hit lots of Toyota dealers.  We're reaching out, hoping someone saw something that could help", Douglas said.

Anyone with infromation should call the Upper Ottawa valley OPP or crimestoppers.

"We'd like to put an end to this", Douglas said.

"But the good news is, nobody was here, and nobody was hurt".