MANCHESTER, Conn. — Manchester police are investigating an attempted carjacking outside a local gym that they believe is connected to several vehicle thefts around town.
Police said they received a report around 6 p.m. Monday that a 2018 Kia Optima had been taken from the Westfarms Mall in West Hartford and was tracked to the area of The Shoppes at Buckland Hills.
Officers looked around the area but did not find the stolen vehicle.
A short time later, a car was reported stolen from the parking lot outside of Maggie McFly’s. The owner said their 2018 Hyundai Sonata had been taken, and there was broken glass where the vehicle was parked.
At that time, the Kia stolen from Westfarms Mall was tracked heading south from the mall area.
A short time later, a man reported to police that he was parked outside Planet Fitness in his 2019 Hyundai Elantra when two vehicles pulled up. Police later determined the two vehicles were the stolen 2018 Kia Optima and 2018 Hyundai Sonata.
The victim told police that five or six suspects, all wearing ski masks or bandanas covering their faces, got out of the stolen vehicles. As one of the suspects tried to open the victim's passenger door, he quickly exited the car, startled by the situation.
Two suspects then reportedly pulled out black semi-automatic handguns and pointed them at the victim. The suspects then returned to the stolen vehicles and sped away from the scene, heading east on Middle Turnpike West.
A 2017 Hyundai Elantra was also reported stolen from the parking lot of the mall sometime after 5 p.m., and once again, glass was discovered in the area where the vehicle was parked.
All three stolen motor vehicles were later recovered in Hartford. These incidents are believed to be related.
Anyone who may have witnessed these thefts or has information regarding these incidents is asked to contact the lead investigator, Detective Jonathan Sargolini, at (860) 645-5545.
Doug Stewart is the Senior Digital Content Producer at FOX61 News. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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