A man is in custody today as police tackle a spate of quad bike thefts across North Yorkshire.
He is one of several suspects arrested this week as officers work “round the clock” to keep communities safe and catch offenders.
Officers say information supplied by the public has been a huge help so far, and are urging rural residents to report suspicious behaviour.
Specialist teams - including the Rural Task Force, Neighbourhood Policing Teams and Operational Support Unit - are running targeted operations in rural areas and around the county’s borders.
It’s in response to thefts of off-road vehicles in Craven, Hambleton, Richmondshire, Selby and Scarborough District in recent weeks.
Patrols in key areas have been taking place day and night, and criminal intelligence techniques are being used to prevent further offences and catch those responsible.
A number of investigations are currently live and arrests have been made.
On Wednesday, a high-specification quad bike was reported stolen from a village near Richmondshire.
A man in his 30s from Darlington is currently in custody after being arrested on suspicion of stealing it. A full investigation is ongoing.
Following a separate incident in the early hours of Tuesday morning, three men and a woman from West Yorkshire were also arrested after a number of quad bikes were stolen from Thirsk.
Sergeant Lauren Wilkinson, who patrols rural areas of Richmondshire, said: “I can’t stress enough how valuable information provided by the community is. So far, it has helped our investigations massively.
“These areas are being targeted because they are remote and sparsely populated.
“But that also means people who are there for the wrong reasons stand out.
“That’s where you can help. You might think someone is acting suspiciously in areas where vehicles or machinery are stored.
“Or you might notice unfamiliar vehicles, often containing more than one occupant, driving around slowly or in places they shouldn’t be.
“It sounds trivial – but time and time again, this sort of information is the final piece of the jigsaw and enables us to catch an offender.
“Your information can make our round-the-clock patrols, operations and investigations even more successful.”
She added that recent quad bike thefts are believed to be targeted rather than opportunistic, meaning the thieves have driven into the area and know what they intend to steal.
As a result, North Yorkshire Police is encouraging owners to keep their off-road vehicles in locked buildings and consider additional security measures, such as CCTV or vehicle trackers.
Sgt Wilkinson’s team is currently investigating several other thefts of off-road vehicles in Richmondshire.
Among them are a Camouflage CF Moto quad bike stolen from Castle Bolton between Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning (ref 12220181848), and an orange KTM off-road motorbike reported stolen in the early hours of Sunday from Brompton-on-Swale (ref 12220179968).
If you have any information about these or other incidents or need to report suspicious behaviour, please call us immediately on 101 and select option 1 to speak to our force control room.