SOUTH PORTLAND — Police in South Portland and Cape Elizabeth are investigating a string of vehicle thefts that occurred over the holidays.

Police Lt. Frank Clark said that three cars were stolen from Ferry Village last week, bringing the total vehicle thefts to six citywide.

Although the total number of thefts is about average, Clark said the three thefts that occurred in Ferry Village are disturbing.

“Residents should be mindful not to leave their keys or other valuables in their vehicles and to contact the Police Department if their witness any suspicious activity,” Clark said.

Clark said two vehicles were recovered after accidents in other communities, and another was recovered using automated license plate recognition.

A 2000 Chevy Malibu was reported stolen from Front Street on Christmas Eve at 5:15 a.m. The Malibu was recovered the next day at 1 p.m. in Freeport, after being driving over an embankment.

Many items in the car had been reported stolen, Clark said, except a handgun that was found in the trunk.

Also on Christmas Eve, a GMC pick-up was reported stolen from Mosher Street at 9:19 p.m. That truck was recovered in Winthrop at 2 p.m. the next day after being driven off the road.

Clark said a vehicle stolen on Jan. 3 was recovered in South Portland using the department’s automated license plate scanner.

Clark said police are looking into whether the thefts are related.

“Those are still under investigation, but based upon the timing and the locations of the thefts, that’s definitely a possibility that we’re exploring,” he said.

In Cape Elizabeth, meanwhile, police met with residents of the Scott Dyer Road area who reported motor vehicle burglary complaints, but most of the missing items were located in a recovered stolen motor vehicle in Pownal.

Cape Elizabeth police believe this burglary is part of a larger crime spree in South Portland, Pownal, Cape Elizabeth and Winthrop.

Clark noted that there have also been 16 thefts from motor vehicles during the last week.

As of Wednesday, no arrests had been made and the crimes continue to be under investigation.

Amy Anderson contributed to this report. Randy Billings can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 100 or [email protected]

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