Westchester County

Police Warn of Cars Being Stolen From Car Washes in New York Towns

Police are urging the public to remain alert when visiting car washes

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Police are warning the public of a series of vehicle thefts taking place at car washes in Westchester County, New York.

According to the Village of Mamaroneck Police Department, at around 1 p.m. Monday a four-door blue BMW with temporary paper registration and black tinted windows drove up to the Diamond Car Wash on Halstead Avenue in Mamaroneck. A passenger wearing all black gloves, mask and hood jumped out and went into a gray BMW X5 that had just been washed.

Although police attempted to stop the stolen vehicle, they were unable to and it fled the scene. However, it was recovered that evening in Queens and returned to its owner.

Hours later, at 9 p.m., a similar incident took place at Pelham Car Wash on Boston Post Road in the Village of Pelham Manor. Workers were finishing up drying a customer's car when a black Audi pulls up. A masked person got out and hopped into the customer's car before both vehicles take off, leaving the employee stunned. The owner of the car is then seen walking up in disbelief, then called police.

"They have their MO, they have their pattern, they know what they’re doing. They use these vehicles to commit other crimes," said Lt. PJ Trujillo of the Mamaroneck Police Department. “The village of Mamaroneck sits between the [Hutchison River Parkway] and I-95, so we know that’s part of the pattern, absolutely."

Subsequently on Tuesday, at around 3:45 p.m., a gray BMW was stolen from the Dip In Car Wash on Mamaroneck Avenue, also in Mamaroneck, after the alleged robbers drove to the car wash, with one jumping out of the car and into the gray BMW.

Police have obtained surveillance video from two of the incidents, which show how the thieves wait for the perfect moment. Investigators said the three cases could be linked to others in the tri-state, but were not yet sure.

The Village of Mamaroneck Police Department is investigating the two incidents in its jurisdiction and is asking the community to be on alert when visiting car washes.

"When the car comes out of the car wash, pull it to a safe location, turn the car off, look for the owner, get a receipt, give them the keys," said Lt. Trujillo.

No arrests have yet been made.

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