Petersen told Parker, "It's unbelievable. Two times we've had people throw bricks through the front window" to steal chainsaws, while thefts occurring on the weekends often are not reported until they were discovered Monday morning. Some of the stolen equipment is pricey, such as the $80,000 custom outfitted skid steer loader stolen from one business.
Brett Wilson, a detective with the Johnson County Kansas Sheriff's Department in Olathe, Kan., said one problem is that "big name manufacturers such as Case and John Deere often have all been keyed the same to allow easier employee access on big farms and construction sites," Parker writes. "But making keys cheap and interchangeable for crew members has targeted vehicles for easy theft." Wilson told her, "If I have a key to a John Deere Gator, I also have a key to other pieces of equipment," meaning someone with just a few key can gain access to equipment of the same manufacturer anywhere, and the recovery rate of stolen goods is low, at just 8 to 10 percent, Wilson said. (Read more)