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Police: 3 New Jersey teens arrested in Nassau stolen car case

Police say three teens were arrested in a string of car break-ins and thefts in Nassau County this weekend.

News 12 Staff

Apr 26, 2022, 9:14 AM

Updated 787 days ago


Police say three teens were arrested in a string of car break-ins and thefts in Nassau County this weekend.
News 12 has learned there were multiple groups hitting various communities at the same time.
Over the weekend police say there were three different groups of thieves in the areas of East Hill, Flower Hill, Manhasset, Greenvale and Plandome opening up cars and stealing them if the key fobs were inside.
Police say three separate groups of thieves from Newark were on Long Island Saturday breaking into cars and stealing one of them.
Another vehicle was stolen at a gas station Tuesday in Syosset.
Newark Public Safety Director Brian O'Hara says the vast majority of stolen cars in Newark were taken elsewhere.
He says the teens are traveling to upper class neighborhoods to steal cars--knowing the vehicles could be unlocked with key fobs inside.
O'Hara says they later sell the vehicles in Newark, where they're used in violent crimes, or shipped overseas to be sold on the black market.
He says the alleged criminals, sometimes as young as 15, use real estate apps to target communities.
"They'll look for neighborhoods that are wealthy, where houses are expensive," O'Hara says. "And they'll go and general just shop in that areas. They'll check the doors, get in, see if they can get it started. If they can, that person starts heading back to Newark, this area, New Jersey. Along the way, they try to disable the GPS devices."
Officials say car thefts are up 206% this year and that the criminals are looking for open cars and checking to see if key fobs are left inside.
Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder says 98% of the cars stolen had their doors unlocked with the fobs inside.
One of the stolen vehicles was spotted on Northern Boulevard. Officials say the person driving intentionally hit a squad car and then continued to drive with a flat tire and damage to the front.
The person then rammed into two more police cars. A total of four police cars were hit, with two of them were totaled and over $250,000 in damage done.
Police say three officers and two detectives were taken to the hospital for treatment and that some may have sustained career-ending injuries
Police say three suspects, two 16-year-olds and a 17-year-old, were taken into custody and a gun was found in their car.
One was held because he had a warrant out for his arrest, but the others were released.
"These individuals are getting out because of Raise the Age. We no longer hold them as adult and they eventually go to family court. The other message we are trying to get to the public is lock your cars, take your fobs in. My cops are getting hurt trying to recover your property, that if it was locked we wouldn't be in this situation,' Ryder says.
Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman said the groups of thieves are coming here because of what he calls New York state's progressive policies like bail reform, that he believes have made the state a less safe place to live and an easy target.

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