3 Men Arrested in Chop Shop Bust

Three men are in custody after police say they were spotted ripping apart stolen vehicles in the woods.

By David Chang
|  Thursday, Jul 19, 2012  |  Updated 5:21 AM EDT
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A sergeant with major crimes auto theft says the patrol officers responded and found three men disassembling an SUV and a pick up truck for their parts.

NBC10Philadelphia.com - Katy Zachry

A sergeant with major crimes auto theft says the patrol officers responded and found three men disassembling an SUV and a pick up truck for their parts.

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Three men are in custody after police say they were spotted ripping apart stolen vehicles in the woods.

It happened around 7 p.m. on the 3000 block of Orthodox Street in Bridesburg. Investigators say a passerby saw the three men and immediately called police. Officers quickly arrived at the scene where they say the men were disassembling a pickup truck and SUV for their parts.

Investigators say the pickup truck was stolen earlier today in Upper Dublin while the SUV was stolen a few weeks ago in Philadelphia. Police immediately arrested two of the men while the third suspect ran and hid behind a nearby building, according to investigators. Police say the man then surrendered once the K 9 unit arrived.

Officers believe the parts most likely would’ve been taken to a chop shop where they would have been sold for more than they are actually worth. Police are crediting the passerby with helping them arrest the three suspects.

“It’s a common occurrence, it doesn’t happen every day,” said Sergeant Dan Buckley of the Philadelphia Police Department. “But it’s something that happens. We’re only effective because the citizenry of Philadelphia responded and called us to tell us about it.”

The three men are being held in custody and will be charged with auto theft and other related crimes. Police say they are working on removing the stolen parts from the wooded area.

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