4 arrested and accused of half of Ferndale's car thefts
Ferndale — Police have arrested four people who police say are connected to nearly half of the thefts from cars reported in the city this year and many others across Metro Detroit.
Authorities had been seeking a group believed to have been responsible for an "extraordinarily high number of thefts from unlocked cars" and stolen vehicles last month.
"Detectives learned these suspects would walk different neighborhoods on almost a nightly basis to check for unlocked cars," police said in a statement Tuesday. "Their intent was to steal anything of value, including change, cell phones, credit and debit cards, and even vehicles on several occasions."
Through an investigation that included help from the FBI-Detroit Violent Gang Task Force and other law enforcement personnel, authorities identified the suspects as Carlos Byars-Walker, 21, of Detroit; Wellington Littles, 17, of Pontiac; Kiron Walker-McNeil, 17, of Detroit; and Corey Rashada, 21, of Highland Park.
Byars-Walker was arrested Sept. 19 in Detroit, while the others were arrested six days later at Oakland Mall in Troy. Each had a stolen car, investigators said in a statement.
Police allege they were behind 65 of 145 thefts from cars, and at least three stolen vehicles, in Ferndale so far in 2019.
But after interviews with the four, "we estimate they are responsible for at least 40 additional unreported thefts from vehicles in Ferndale, hundreds more larcenies from unlocked cars in the metropolitan area, and in excess of $400,000 worth of recovered stolen vehicles," according to the release.
Detectives have recovered 11 stolen vehicles from multiple jurisdictions, police reported.
So far, all four have been charged with receiving and concealing a stolen vehicle. Rashada has also been charged with possessing a stolen financial transaction device and unlawful driving away of an automobile.
The group faces additional charges in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties as other jurisdictions complete their probes, police said.