KPD e-News Release: Burglars Use Stolen Cargo Trailer to Steal Refrigerant Worth $30,000

Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660

ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)

http://Police.KingsportTN.govwww.KingsportPDBlog.com

NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: Burglars Use Stolen Cargo Trailer to Steal Refrigerant Worth $30,000
DATE: September 1, 2016
CASE #: 16-018677 (Stolen Utility Trailer from Best Uniforms)

16-018667 (Stolen Refrigerant from Johnstone Supply)

16-018670 (Stolen Refrigerant from United Refrigeration)

GENERAL NARRATIVE
Kingsport Police Department Detectives are investigating a series of related crimes where a cargo trailer was stolen from one business and later used by the thieves to haul away their extremely valuable loot from two other nearby burgled businesses.

Sometime after midnight on August 31, 2016, a white, 12 foot, dual axle, enclosed cargo trailer ($1,000 value) was stolen from the parking lot of Best Uniforms, located at 1904 Brookside Drive in Kingsport. Peculiarly, two individuals, who are now considered persons of interest, came into the store just a day earlier and made an unsolicited offer to purchase the trailer. This is not believed to be a mere coincidence.

Those two individuals were captured on store surveillance video, with photos taken from that footage included in this release. One of these individuals was a white male in his mid-50s to early-60s, with dark hair and a medium build, standing approximately 5 feet 9 inches tall. The other individual was a white female with blonde hair.

The same night the trailer was stolen from Best Uniforms, two commercial burglaries occurred in the nearby Brookside Industrial Park. In both burglaries, the suspects cut through an exterior sheet metal wall of a warehouse and stole multiple 30 pound canisters of R-22 refrigerant (cooling fluid).

One of these businesses was Johnstone Supply, located at 1909 Brookside Lane, where 40 canisters of refrigerant were stolen, while the other business was United Refrigeration, located at 2025 Brookside Lane, where another 10 canisters of refrigerant were stolen. The canisters have a value of $600 each for a total of $30,000 and weigh a total of 1,500 pounds.

Surveillance video from area businesses captured some of the burglars’ activity. There are believed to be as many as 4-5 total suspects in the burglary crew, who were observed on video dressed in all black clothing. They are believed to be traveling in two separate vehicles, one a light-colored (possibly silver) 4-door Dodge pickup and the other a small dark-colored sedan.

The pickup was observed on surveillance video towing what is believed to be the cargo trailer stolen from Best Uniforms. Detectives theorize that the burglars stole the cargo trailer to transport and conceal the 1,500 pounds of stolen refrigerant. Photos of both suspect vehicles and the stolen cargo trailer are included in this release as well.

Anyone who recognizes either of the persons of interest or either of the suspect vehicles, or who may potentially have any information which may help solve this case is asked to contact Detectives in the K.P.D. Criminal Investigations Division at 423-229-9429 or call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111.

Alternatively, if an individual who is able to supply information related to this or any other case wishes not to be identified, tips can be submitted anonymously via online “Citizen Feedback” forms available at the following link:

http://police.KingsportTN.gov/Citizen_Feedback

RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit