Custom off road vehicle stolen from repair shop

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A specialized off-road vehicle made for the mud went missing from an Acworth car repair shop. The vehicle owner is out thousands of dollars and the business owner is trying to put a stop to a troubling trend.

Ken Stahl, the owner of KAMS Auto Service Center, showed FOX 5 News the surveillance video.

“He came with his own battery, installed it and took off,” said Stahl.

The video showed a man walking with a battery toward a custom 1977 Jeep CJ5 early, which was left behind the shop early Friday morning. The man can be seen getting into the Jeep and driving away. Stahl said he disabled the vehicle the night before to prevent it from being stolen.

“I let the air out of the air out of the tires and took the battery. They still drove out Highway 41,” said Stahl.

The vehicle owner Brian Barone said since the Jeep isn't street legal and it wasn't insured. He said it was being repaired and upgraded after a recent mudding mishap.

“It's custom made for mud bogging and I put a lot of money into it, over ten thousand dollars,” said Barone.

He said whoever stole his Jeep knew about a secret ignition switch. Police said they have no leads, but are reviewing video of the theft and of a man the night before apparently casing the place. Police told FOX 5 News they have responded to the north Cobb County area on numerous thefts and auto breaks ins. Ken Stahl said different businesses in the area are trying protective measures.

“Different companies are paying for security now, trying to prevent it now it from happening because of the thefts and it's just too costly to recoup their losses,” said Ken Stahl.

Brian Barone hoped somehow to recoup his losses, but Ken Stahl isn't holding his breath the Jeep will be found intact.

“I would say it's probably getting stripped for parts of left in the woods somewhere,” said Stahl.

“Please just return my Jeep. I need it,” said Barone.