Suspected thieves targeted three area construction rental agencies this past week and netted more than $40,000 worth of stolen goods. Police in Medford and Talent say they believe the thefts are related.
The first incident occurred Thursday night at All-In-One Rentals at 865 West Stewart Ave. in Medford. Thieves cut through the fence, entered the equipment lot and began to gather equipment to steal before an alarm was set off and Medford police responded to the scene, said Medford Police Lt. Bob Hansen. No suspects were found, but no equipment was stolen.
The next incident occurred Friday night or Saturday morning, this time in Talent.
Suspected thieves stole an estimated $40,000 worth of construction equipment from All-In-One Rentals at 1120 South Pacific Highway in Talent using similar methods as the incident in Medford, said Talent Police Chief Mike Moran.
The thieves broke into the equipment lot by cutting through a cable that was strung across the entrance to prevent unauthorized entry. They then had easy access to equipment that wasn't tied down in the lot and likely made off with it using a large truck or trailer, Moran said.
The equipment stolen included at least four air compressors, five generators, a portable pump and sewer snake equipment used in sewage line and septic tank maintenance.
Moran said that the thieves only took items that were in the equipment lot and that it does not appear any buildings were broken into. He also said that to move this amount of equipment, the perpetrators would have needed to use at least one large truck or a large flatbed trailer.
The final break-in occurred in Medford Monday morning, police said, with the report of a break-in at the United Rental location at 2216 West Main Street. Thieves jumped the fence, cut it from the inside with a pair of United Rental shears and made off with a generator and a high-powered electrical saw. The incident could have taken place anytime over the weekend, Hansen said.
"It sounds like too much of a coincidence," he said. "They're probably all related and probably the same suspects ... but we don't have proof of that yet."
All three cases are under investigation. Talent police are looking for any surveillance footage that might show suspicious vehicles near the scene of the crime during the Friday-night-to-Saturday-morning time frame. Moran also is asking anyone in the neighborhood who might have seen unusual activity to come forward.
Talent police can be contacted at 541-776-7206, and Medford police can be reached at 541-774-2200