GASTONIA, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — Last weekend a camper was stolen from Camping World of Concord. Concord Police said a suspect drove onto the property, hooked the camper up to a U-Haul, and drove off.
The camper was later involved in a hit-and-run near the Crowders Mountain area, which sparked the investigation.
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The owners of the camper said they purchased it eight months ago and took it to Camping World for warranty issues. Wednesday night, the owners said a man, who watched the story on Queen City News spotted the camper in Gastonia and called the police.
The owners said nothing inside the camper was recovered including two televisions, a grill, and items hand-made by a relative that passed away in April.
Concord Police said they have not identified the suspect and that the investigation is still ongoing.
CONCORD, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — Over the last eight months, Tim Hartgrove and his wife have been traveling the Southeast with their camper.
“It was exciting to start, going traveling with my kids and camping. I enjoy it, it’s great,” Hartgrove said.
His son-in-law Brandon Hardy bought them the camper as a retirement gift for that exact reason. But now, it’s in someone else’s hands.
“Retirement for my parents is kind of shattered right now,” Hardy said.
Friday, Hartgrove said he brought the camper to Camping World of Concord for warranty issues. Two days later, he received a call from his daughter asking where the camper was.
“[She said] ‘Are you in Crowders Mountain?’ I’m like, ‘No, why would I be in Crowders Mountain with the camper?’ I said, ‘The camper is in the shop. I don’t have it.’ She said, ‘Are you serious?’ And from that, she was like, ‘Oh my god, somebody has the camper.'”
On Saturday morning, a suspect pulled into Camping World with a U-Haul, hooked up the camper, and drove off according to the Concord Police Department.
The following day, the driver was spotted on a doorbell camera running over a mailbox in the Crowders Mountain area, leaving behind a license plate.
“That’s the only way he found out the camper had been stolen. He ran the tag, went back to Brandon and Brandon called me,” Hartgrove said.
Their next step was calling Camping World. Brandon said workers there had no idea the camper was missing until he asked them to check on it.
“I called them and asked, ‘Is there any type of compensation? Is there anything that is going to be done? You know we lost personal items as well as our camper?’ They stated, ‘There is nothing we can do, just file it on your insurance and you’ll be fine,’” Hardy said.
Within the last three months, Concord Police said at least two campers have been stolen from the location.
Queen City News reached out to Camping World of Concord to find out what their policy is for theft involving customers’ property and did not hear back by the deadline.
“They just don’t seem to care,” Hardy said.
While Hardy says the camper, two televisions, a grill, and other items inside the camper can be replaced, two throw blankets hand-made by his mother who passed in April cannot.
“It means a lot to me if I got them back. It’s just something of hers that I would [love to] have,” Hartgrove said.
Concord Police say the suspect covered numbers on the side of the U-Haul, making it difficult to track him. Police are still looking for the suspect and the camper.