Detroit automakers are facing an increase in theft of new vehicles from factories and storage areas, and unfortunately, the culprits are not always adults. Three children were arrested by Detroit Police on Aug. 22 trying to push a Hellcat-powered car from a Stellantis storage bin, and the youngest of the bunch was just 11 years old.
Based on Fox 2 Detroit, the alleged theft took place at the Jefferson North Plant, located just a few miles northeast of downtown Detroit. The Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango were built there, but the storage yard is home to other new vehicles under the Stellantis umbrella. The teens, aged 11, 12 and 14, were caught trying to steal Dodge Charger and Challenger Hellcat models. The 700-horsepower muscle car is scary even to experienced drivers, let alone those who can barely see from behind the wheel.
It did not say what time the children were arrested, or how far they were in the process. Obviously they didn’t pass, but Fox 2 Reports mention an increase in vehicle thefts in the Detroit area. Local police say carjackings are up 40 percent compared to 2021, and a lieutenant in the Detroit police department says this is the youngest child he’s ever seen involved in vehicle theft. There are also suspicions that adults might be guiding children with instructions to steal cars.
This certainly isn’t the first report of cars being stolen from an automaker’s facility that we’ve heard of recently. In late July, several arrests were made after thieves took a stolen new F-150 Raptor from Ford’s stockyard in Dearborn. In June, 13 Raptors were stolen from Ford’s Dearborn truck factory, and jumping back to December 2021, thieves staged a Hollywood-style heist to steal a Mustang Shelby GT500 from a factory in Flat Rock, Michigan. General Motors is also not immune to theft. In May, several Chevrolet Camaros were stolen from a GM plant in Lansing, 100 miles west of Motor City.