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Belmont County agencies teaming up as equipment thefts increase

Sheriff Dave Lucas says a UTV was recently stolen off the lot from Kuester Implements, a business sits along Reservoir Road and U.S. 40.

Belmont County agencies are teaming up to track down another missing UTV.

Sheriff Dave Lucas says a UTV was recently stolen off the lot from Kuester Implements, a business sits along Reservoir Road and U.S. 40.

"We’ve had several incidents in the recent past of businesses to where in the late hours of the night, or early hours of the morning, in darkness stealing equipment," Lucas said.

Lucas says the utility vehicle, known as a "Gator," was brought in by a customer for service this month. And soon thereafter, it was reported stolen.

The sheriff's office has recently encountered similar criminal activity. Last April, detectives broke up a theft ring by conducting a sting on a chop shop operation.

Lucas says he's asking Belmont County residents to keep their eyes open and err on the safe side if something seems suspicious.

"Give us a call,” he said. “Call 911. I’d rather respond to a business that is the owner working late or doing something or came in early than not.

"If you see something, say something -- give us a call. "

Anyone with information in this specific case is asked to call the Belmont County Sheriff’s Office or our anonymous Crimebusters Tipline at 1-800-862-BUST.

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