Unfortunately for the Fiat Chrysler Warren Truck Assembly Plant in Michigan, a fleet of at least 10 trucks were stolen at the same time around 3:55 a.m. on Friday. The security guard contacted police after he saw a fleet of 2018 Ram trucks drive through the factory gates. According to the Detroit Free Press, authorities believe that the robbery was well-planned and also well-executed. It appears that someone cut a hole in a chain link fence, which allowed the trucks to leave the premises.
All of the thieves arrived together in a stolen vehicle, a 2003 Ram pickup truck. Once the hole was cut in the fence, they all ran into the lot and jumped into a truck. The factory did not disclose whether the keys to the cars were accessible to the thieves, citing security concerns. The stolen trucks were being held in a distribution area, and were fresh off the assembly line.
Even 12 hours later, the factory was still unsure which trucks had been stolen, pending an audit of their inventory. The initial delay in the factory supplying the VIN information, as well as confusion over how many vehicles were missing, did not help police in their efforts. Warren Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer expressed his frustration.
“Why aren’t they calling me? We can’t do an investigation if they’re not working with us. We don’t even know if it’s nine or 11 vehicles stolen. Or what colors. Or the VIN numbers.”
The surveillance tapes from the premises and surrounding roads are under review, as authorities work to find the culprits.
According to police, there are many reasons why someone would steal the trucks. Besides having a retail value of around $30,000, 2018 Ram trucks have many things that make it valuable, from individual parts and sound systems, to GPS trackers. There is speculation that the trucks were ordered by someone as part of a big order, and that the vehicles could have already left the country in shipping containers.
Digital Trends added that the total number of missing trucks may have been as little as eight, with one vehicle already recovered by Friday afternoon. The truck that was found had run out of gas.
According to the manager of the Vehicle Identification at the National Insurance Crime Bureau, most of the car thefts in the country are pulled off by organized gangs or theft rings.