Police suspect high-end car theft ring after two chases on Long Beach Island

(Surf City Police Department photo)

(Surf City Police Department photo)

Police are warning Long Beach Island residents to be vigilant after the theft of a high-end vehicle and subsequent pursuits early Thursday.

According to the Surf City Police Department, an officer attempted to stop a fast-moving Mercedes sedan after observing suspicious activity.

When the driver failed to stop, an officer pursued the vehicle off the island and onto the northbound lanes of the Garden State Parkway, when police ended the pursuit in the interest of public safety, police said.

Shortly after the chase ended, another officer observed a sedan traveling southbound on Long Beach Boulevard at a high rate of speed, attempted a stop, and then pursued the vehicle off the island, when the chase was terminated, according to police.

“Further investigation revealed that the Mercedes sedan was stolen from Surf City shortly before officers saw it being operated and that the vehicle was left unlocked with the key fob inside,” police said in a statement. “The second vehicle, the dark-colored sedan, had been previously reported stolen from Newark and is believed to be the transport vehicle used by the suspects.”

Police are requesting residents and visitors who were on the north-side of the municipality overnight to report any thefts and check any security cameras for activity between 1 a.m. and 4 a.m.

“Unfortunately, we believe this is the same group that targeted our town last week and have been stealing high-end vehicles across the state. These individuals WILL continue to come back and victimize our town (and area in general) if residents continue to make it easy for them by leaving their vehicles unlocked and/or with the keys fobs inside,” the statement said.

The Surf City Police Department requests residents with any information to call the non-emergency line at (609) 494-8121.

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