Lawn businesses targeted by thieves
TAMARAC, Fla. (WSVN) -- Police are searching for the crooks who stole thousands of dollars worth in lawn equipment from several landscaping companies.
It was a busy day on a piece of private property in Tamarac near Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport. "And I have to use my other truck, but I have to buy all brand new lawn equipment and stuff on Monday," said the owner of BK Landscapes Bill Koontz.
It's not the type of busy work these lawn service companies wanted on a Friday. Fifteen companies store their lawn equipment gear on the lot. Police said, Thursday night, the property was hit by thieves. "The property is just shy of an acre, and we rent out about 30 spots in total," said property owner Jerimiah Daily.
Eleven companies were robbed of lawn equipment, trailers and expensive trucks.
A stressed and upset Koontz tried to track down the $80,000 worth of stolen lawn equipment. "It has identification on it, all my equipment. I don't know where they are going to get rid of it," said Koontz.
According to the Broward Sheriff's Office, detectives said an unknown number of people hopped the 10-foot fence Thursday night and used one of Koontz' trucks. The crooks then fled though the front gate.
"I usually put a boot on my wheels. They sawed through the boot, and I put a club on the steering wheel. They sawed through the steering wheel, and then they hot-wired that to start the truck up," said Koontz.
In Koontz' case, they stole his entire trailer full of equipment. Officers found his trailer empty, miles away in Miramar.
As police work the case, these businesses are working on re-building from the ground up. "They know what they are doing," said Koontz. "In this day and age, this is what's going to happen to anyone at any time. It's hard to prevent this stuff from going on."
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