WILKES-BARRE – Someone attempted to steal a large all-terrain vehicle from Two Jacks Cycle & Powersports on Coal Street, driving the vehicle through a chain link fence before abandoning it on Parkview Circle behind the dealership shortly after 9 p.m. Thursday.
Police searched the area around the Sherman Hills Apartment Complex and detained the driver of a silver Pontiac on Parkview Circle for more than an hour as they reviewed footage captured by the dealership's surveillance cameras, but did not make any arrests.
Tire tracks led from inside the dealership property to a section of the barbed-wire-topped fence surrounding the yard where vehicles are stored, which had pulled away from the fence posts and hung loosely, and towards Parkview Circle. A thick metal wire had snared around three of the tires of the stolen ATV, a camouflage two-seat Can-Am Commander XT.
Bill Davis, owner of Two Jacks Cycle & Powersports, said the vehicle appeared to be one of the dealership's demonstration units. It sells for around $15,000 new, Davis said. He said it did not appear as if anything else was stolen from the dealership.
A key was left in the ignition of the vehicle. Davis told police it is "very uncommon" for him to leave the keys in an ATV.
Davis said the business is equipped with alarms that sounded when the yard was entered as well as several surveillance cameras. The incident was captured by the business' surveillance cameras, Davis said, but the video footage did not have adequate definition for him or police to identify the person who removed the ATV.
Davis said the vehicle theft was a first for his business, but that crime has increased in the area recently. He said the streetlights on Parkview Circle have not worked for several months, which has made the situation worse.
"This has become a very tough neighborhood," Davis said. "I think the police need a little more help down here."