INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Indiana State Police officials are warning drivers not to leave their cars unattended on the side of the interstate for too long. Police said if you do, you could return to find it without some parts.
"Leaving it anytime out on the interstate could possibly end up with what we're talking about," said Indiana State Police Sgt. Rich Myers.
Over the last four days, State Police officers have taken three theft reports from car owners who's cars were abandoned along the interstate. Sgt. Myers said in each case, thieves did not steal the whole car, but instead took the rims and tires off.
"What we're assuming is they are taking these to either scrap yards or to second hand tire stores and selling them," said Sgt. Myers.
Investigators said the majority of the thefts were reported on the east side on I-70. Sgt. Myers said car owners experienced some type of problem and had to abandon their car on the side of the road.
"We want the public to be aware this is happening and not to leave your vehicle for any amount of time at all," he said.
It did not take 24-Hour-News 8 long to find several abandoned cars and trucks along the interstate. We found a truck empty near the I-65 Zionsville exit. About ten minutes later, south on I-65, we ran into Dale Luttman. Luttman's car overheated, forcing him to pull over.
"I've seen a lot of vehicles being left on the side of the road; of course I'm staying here until I can get mine to where I need to get it," Luttman said.
State Police suggest other motorists do the same. They also suggest calling a tow truck, or some type of emergency service to come out with you while you are with the car to make sure that it's removed at that time.
In Luttman's case, he called someone he knows to come out and help him.
"I don't think that's maybe it's the best option, but that the option I'm taking," Luttman said.
According to Indiana Law, if your vehicle breaks down on the interstate, you have 24 Hours to remove it. If your car breaks down on the interstate, inside the I-465 loop, you have only two hours to get your car removed. All other roads have 72 hours.
Because of this rash in thefts, State Police will start checking abandoned vehicles at the start of every shift and compare it with a list of abandoned vehicles since the last shift; Any vehicles that are left up to the time limit will be impounded.
Thousands of people in Indianapolis were without power early Thursday morning.
Hoosiers saw unbearably cold temperatures Thursday morning.
Mintonye Elementary School may be ready to open in August, but Southwestern Middle School won't be ready. That's the preliminary assessment Superintendent Scott Hanback told the Tippecanoe School Corporation school board Wednesday evening.