Tow truck stolen from local charity

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- An early morning theft has one local business unable to help those in need. The Auto Donation Center works with the American Children's Society to help families around the metro with supplies and vehicles. Mike Lane runs The Auto Donation Center and says his 20 foot Ford F650 roll back tow truck was stolen from his locked parking.

"He slim jimmied the door and got in the truck," said Lane.   "Once he had the truck started he came over and cut the gate and he drove out going south on Hickman Mills."

tow trucks tolenLucky for investigators, the entire 20 minute hijack was caught on surveillance camera. Lane says he has four cameras that watch his lot at night, with lights around the property.

"It's aggravating, it makes us mad that somebody would do that to us, we never even charge to tow or help people," said Lane.

Lane says the donated cars are picked up by the center and given to families with sick kids or sold to help support other programs the auto donation center sponsors. Lane says without that truck he can't help those in need.

Also caught on camera, a white Ford pickup truck that arrived just before the theft and left with the truck after. The male suspect isn't wearing a mask or even gloves. Lane says he's heard of people stealing cars and trucks, but a tow truck?

"They'll try and take it somewhere and sell it, I don't know.  Obviously if you steal for a living you're not that smart," said Lane.

The truck is only two years old and cost the charity $85,000. Lane says he also has close to $9,000 worth of equipment on the truck. At the moment the Auto Donation Center is offering up a $5,000 reward for the return of the tow truck and the arrest of the suspects.

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