WKYT - Lexington - Headlines

Man arrested after string of car lot thefts

Workers at Prime Motor Sales on New Circle Road say thieves are hurting their business.

"You know it takes about $500 to repair these so it takes a lot of money out of the lot. Hurts our profit and sales," says Daniel Wafford.

He says earlier this month, three of their vehicles had catalytic converters cut off of them and stolen. They're not the only victims.

"We've lost 6 or 7 ourselves over the past few months, but numerous lots up and down the road here, I would estimate probably thirty to forty stolen," says Wafford.

Just down the road, Big Blue Auto Sales had two stolen, and Andover Motors had six stolen. Cameras at Prime Motors captured video of someone crawling underneath the trucks. Just a few days later, John Bellusico was arrested in Bourbon County after car lots there reported similar activity. Lexington Police believe Bellusico is responsible for the crimes.

"They told us they were able to determine that the suspect who committed their catalytic converter thefts also committed ours," says Sherelle Roberts of the Lexington Division of Police.

Workers here at the car lots say the true victims in these crimes are the consumers.

"We have to add that to the cost of the vehicle so the price goes higher. We've added surveillance cameras so we have to add that to the cost of the vehicles," says Wafford.

And although the cost to replace a catalytic converter may go up into the hundreds of dollars, workers say the scrap value of a stolen one may be as low as $40. Daniel Wafford says has a message for any other would-be theives.

"Stay away from our lot so that we can try to give a better price to the customer," he says.


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