Stolen SUV found at a suspected Glendale chop shopPosted: Updated:
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- An SUV stolen from a Valley car lot has turned up thanks to surveillance video and a tip from a 3TV viewer.
The suburban was found at a Glendale home along with at least one other vehicle reported stolen.
Police say the suspect, 42-year-old Clifford Prewitt, has been operating a chop shop out of his home for some time and can be linked to several other crimes.
“You have got to just be stupid to think you are going to get away with stuff these days,” said Scot Watson, owner of 101 Auto Outlet and the owner of that stolen suburban.
Lucky for Watson, the crooks who stole the vehicle early Thursday morning were caught on camera and you can see the suburban getting towed away on top of a trailer.
“When someone has an operation like that you know it’s not an isolated incident, they are out doing it all the time so it's important to catch them," said Watson.
3TV broadcast the surveillance video Friday and sure enough a viewer remembered seeing that truck, trailer and suburban parked at the Home Depot near 67th Avenue and Bell.
Monday police found the trailer, also reported as stolen, in the same Home Depot parking lot.
They kept a close eye on it and reportedly watched as Prewitt towed it to his home in Glendale.
Then, late Tuesday night, police say Prewitt took the trailer and broke into the Firestone Auto Center near 35th Avenue and Bell. That’s where he is accused of stealing $30,000 worth of tools and a short time later Phoenix police grabbed him.
“Our thing was catching the guys,” said Watson. “That's all I wanted.”
As for his suburban, it has been found but is simply a shell of what it once was. Everything under the hood is stripped out.
Police say Prewitt ran a chop shop out of his Glendale home where he lives with his parents, and according to court records, he admits to committing countless other crimes to feed his heroin addiction.
Police are still looking for the second person, seen walking through the parking lot on the surveillance video. They are calling him a person of interest.