BLOOMINGTON – Thursday morning, an Indiana State trooper had just left the Indiana State Police Post and turned north on Woodyard Road from Vernal Pike in Bloomington when he observed suspicious activity by two men in a red Dodge truck parked alongside a black GMC SUV that was off the roadway and had been left abandoned.
The trooper observed a cloud of dust coming from the GMC as 52-year-old Nicky D. Wright, of Martinsville, was reaching into the fender well area of the vehicle. A second suspect, 63-year-old Richard P. Vanskiver, from Martinsville, was sitting in the Dodge truck, that was parked next to the GMC.
As troopers arrived on the scene to assist, troopers determined the men were stealing a catalytic converter from the abandoned vehicle.
Troopers arrested both men on charges of auto theft, conversion, and criminal mischief.
Lt. Paul Bucher, Commander of the Bloomington District, commended the work of the troopers as this type of crime has spiked recently.
“We continually see this crime occur within our community as the prices of precious metals rise and our Troopers are well trained in detecting the behaviors of suspects that prey on other people’s misfortunes,” he added. “We would like to remind the public to be vigilant of their property and report any suspicious activity alongside our roadways.”