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Deputies find haul of stolen vehicles on Sheller Road

Yesterday, Thursday, a total of five stolen vehicles were recovered near Sunnyside in the 6000 block of Sheller Road.

The Yakima County Sheriff's office discovered the haul based on a tip reported to the Sunnyside Police Department.

Sheriff's deputies checked the area and found the stolen cars abandoned in the yard surrounding an older mobile home. No one was at home.

Two of the cars were intact, one was in the process of being stripped of parts and two cars had already been stripped, noted Sergeant Robert Udell with the Sheriff's office.

The vehicles were stolen from three different jurisdictions: two from Yakima County, two from Sunnyside, and one from Grandview. The cars were removed from the scene by a tow truck, said Udell.

He noted the location on Sheller Road was being used to store and strip the vehicles of useful and valuable parts.

Debris in the area indicated the location had been used for that purpose for at least the last few months. Deputies were able to locate the spot based on the information gained by Sunnyside Police, and a deputy's knowledge of the area. Sunnyside Police officers also arrived to help deputies recover the vehicles.

Udell said the incident was highlighted by the close interaction of two law enforcement agencies, and that sharing information allowed many of the cars to be recovered before significant damage occurred.

Udell said the investigation to determine the suspects in the car thefts is ongoing.

The recovery also served as a reminder, he noted, that the practice of warming up cars in the morning contributes to the problem of vehicle theft.

Udell said at least three of the vehicles recovered yesterday had their keys in the ignition at the time they were stolen, the engines running and the owners inside their homes.

The Sheriff's office also reminds car owners that leaving unattended vehicles running is against the law and can result in a $124 fine.

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