Protect your expensive equipment from springtime thieves

Dan McKeel knew something was wrong when he got into work Monday morning and saw that the back gate was wide open.

"That open gate, just beyond the trucks, is not suppose to be open and it never is," says McKeel.

After some investigating, McKeel noticed two lawn mowers, a trailer and a Ford pickup truck were missing. A total of $30,000 worth of equipment was stolen from his business, McKeel Equipment.

"We’re at a loss right now," says McKeel.

Over lunch, McKeel got some good news.

"The truck was found behind this building right over here, which is on another piece of property right behind us," says McKeel.

They have the truck back, but McKeel says they’re still missing about $15,000 worth of equipment.

"The public’s help in a situation like this is very crucial," says Calloway County Sheriff Sam Steger.

Calloway County Sheriff Sam Steger says theft cases, like this one, can be difficult to solve. However, he says there are things you can do right now to protect your expensive equipment. He says don’t keep your things, like a lawn mower, out in the open. Thieves are always on the look out for items that are readily available and quick to take. He says trailers are also a hot commodity for thieves.

"One lock that I’ve seen a lot of people transitioning to, it actually fits up in the hub of the tongue," says Steger. "It’s like a ball hitch, it wraps up the outside of the tongue and fits up in there so you can’t drop it down on the ball of a truck to pull it away."

Steger says it’s important that you write down all the serial numbers, so you can keep track of your equipment if it does gets stolen.

"All the time we’re coming across stolen property or we know it’s stolen but we can’t identify it because there might be 50 others in the county," says Steger.

Luckily for McKeel, he has the serial numbers written down in a safe place. He’s keeping his fingers crossed, hoping that investigators will find the stolen equipment.

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