Two vehicles, a Jeep and a dirt bike, were stolen Thursday morning in what police think were related crimes, Steamboat Springs police Sgt. Joel Rae said.
At 3:35 a.m., a resident at 380 River Road was awakened by a noise outside. He went outside and discovered his blue 1997 Jeep Wrangler had been stolen from his driveway and his mailbox had been smashed, possibly by the person backing out of the driveway.
The vehicle had been left unlocked with the keys inside, Rae said.
About 6:30 a.m., police received a call from Action Motor Sports, at 1771 Shield Drive, reporting that a 2002 KTM 125 SX dirt bike, worth $4,500, had been stolen the night before. It appeared that someone snapped a lock securing the store's storage area to get to the bike, Rae said. It also appeared that the thief or thieves first tried to take a newer, more expensive 2004 KTM 450 bike, but that bike had just been assembled and had not yet been filled with gasoline or engine fluids.
Later that morning, the stolen Jeep was found, abandoned, near Minglewood Timbers, just across the road from Action Motorsports. It appeared the car had been driven about 60 miles since being stolen, Rae said, and a drill that did not belong to the vehicle's owner was found inside it.
"We believe the two (thefts) may be connected, based on the proximity," Rae said.
Anyone with information about either vehicle theft is asked to call the Steamboat Springs Police Department at 879-1144.