A traffic stop near Williams Lake Tuesday led to the recovery of a Ford F550 service truck that was driven through the bay doors of a local construction company overnight Monday in a brazen break and enter.
Staff Sgt. Del Byron confirmed the Peterson Contracting service truck, which could be seen on a flatdeck trailer outside the detachment Wednesday, was recovered by Williams Lake RCMP through ‘great police work that started with a traffic stop.’
Byron wouldn’t elaborate on the details surrounding the investigation, but did acknowledge the truck was recovered hidden off of Highway 97 north of Williams Lake, after the welder was found during the traffic stop Tuesday in a different vehicle.
“The matter is under investigation,” Byron said.
The destructive break and enter in the lakecity had hundreds of Tribune Facebook followers share the RCMP’s request for assistance in asking for the public’s help in locating the vehicle.
On Tuesday, Const. Joel Kooger said police were advised by staff at Peterson Contracting early Tuesday morning. Nov. 12 that their shop had been broken into and a work truck had been stolen. Once inside, the thieves drove the work truck through the closed bay doors.
The distinctive truck had ‘Peterson Contracting’ decals on the door panels and was equipped with a small crane and welding unit.
Jared Kohlen has been a mechanic with Peterson Contracting for the last nine years and had all his work tools — an estimated $20,000 worth of uninsured items — inside the service truck when it was stolen.
“I thought I was having a bad dream when the phone ran,” Kohlen said Tuesday of when another worker discovered the break in at about 3 a.m. and called him. “All my tools are in there. Everything I’ve accumulated over the last 12 years being in the trade. It’s the last thing I would think would happened. I’m still a little overwhelmed.”
Kohlen, who is married with three young children, said it looked liked the thieves tried to steal a vehicle outside the shop, which is located in the industrial area of Williams Lake, but were unsuccessful. When they couldn’t get that vehicle, they broke into the shop, jumped into the mobile service truck and drove it right through the bay doors.
“We’ve had vehicles stolen before, but nothing like this,” Kohlen said.
Byron confirmed tools were also recovered when police found the service truck.