Stolen Car Bust Yields A Hot Air Balloon

Estimated read time 2 min read

You never know what you’ll find.

The funny thing about people who can’t seem to keep their hands off other’s cars is they often steal other stuff. We’ve seen all kinds of bizarre stories about thieves who not only had a stash of vehicles on their property but also tools, guns, electronics, and even historic artifacts. But a report out of New Mexico says law enforcement found a stolen air balloon as part of a recent stolen car bust, which is a first for us.

Police in Portland, Oregon are using a new tool in the fight against growing car theft.

If you’re not aware, every October Albuquerque hosts a humongous hot air balloon festival with hundreds of balloons. Many of those balloons are operated throughout the year in the Duke City. Because of this, there are surely opportunities for someone dishonest enough to swipe one. And when Socorro County Sheriff’s Office descended on a remote property back on June 29, a missing hot air balloon was found among the stolen vehicles.

That balloon was inside a trailer which had been stolen back in May. Clearly labeled on the trailer was the fact it contained a hot air balloon, so the guy who stole it knew what he was getting.

Also among the stolen vehicles was a food truck and a nice Airstream camper. All these vehicles were sitting on a piece of desert property in Socorro County. A spokesman told KRQE the cars were in different stages of teardown, with some so striped they could only get the VINs off the chassis. One man was arrested in connection with the discovery, but authorities believe others were involved in the thefts.

The sheriff’s office posted photos on Facebook of several vehicles found on the property which hadn’t been reported as stolen. We hope the rightful owners see them and get their cars back. It’s also amazing that people would have a car stolen and wouldn’t report it to police, but it does happen.

Steven Symes

Steven Symes is an accomplished automotive journalist with a passion for all things related to cars. His extensive knowledge and love for the automotive world shine through in his writing, which covers a diverse range of topics.

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