Three arrests have been made and dangerous weapons seized as a result of Operation Alibi, a cross-border initiative between North Yorkshire Police and Cleveland Police, to combat the theft of farm machinery.
At 5.17am on Monday 21 August North Yorkshire Police were called by a member of the public to investigate reports of a car that had crashed into barriers at Sandsend, near Whitby.
On arrival officers carried out checks on the car and discovered that it was stolen. They also found dangerous weapons including a large machete, which was in the car, as well as a hunting knife which had been discarded nearby.
An agricultural buggy from a nearby farm was also reported to have been stolen shortly afterwards. This was tracked down by officers and one of the suspects, a 16-year-old male, was arrested on suspicion of theft of a motor vehicle and burglary of a dwelling. He was released on bail pending further enquiries.
Meanwhile the other two suspects had been reported as being seen on the beach which triggered an extensive search by both North Yorkshire and Cleveland Police. This combined effort resulted in both the men, aged 24 and 18, being arrested.
The 24-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of theft of a motor vehicle while the 18-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of aggravated vehicle taking, burglary of a dwelling, theft of motor vehicle and breach of bail.
They were taken into custody in Middlesbrough where they were bailed pending further enquiries. The 18-year-old male was remanded in custody for breach of bail conditions in relation to an unrelated incident.
Ryan Chapman, Detective Inspector of North Yorkshire Police, said: “This highlights the successful working relationship between North Yorkshire and Cleveland Police, where officers have performed outstandingly in a developing situation, both arresting the suspects as well as keeping the public safe. I want to reassure our rural community that they are a priority for North Yorkshire Police - if you see anything suspicious please contact us immediately.”
Cleveland Police’s operational lead for rural crime Acting Inspector Rory Sadler said: “Cleveland Police will continue to work with North Yorkshire Police to tackle this issue and bring offenders to justice. It remains a priority for us to protect rural communities and apprehend stolen off-road vehicles before they hit the streets of Cleveland where they are often used for anti-social behaviour and other criminality.”