Tip leads investigators to stolen vehicles in suspected chop shop in Independence

Emily Rittman/KCTV5

A number of stolen vehicles were found inside a suspected 'chop shop' in Independence.

When officers inspected a storage lot, they found dismantled vehicles with VIN numbers missing.

Among them was the truck that belonged to Brian Sollars, who posted a picture of his stolen 2012 GMC online on the Stolen KC Facebook page.

Sollars said a stranger reached out to him shortly after, providing details about the truck.

"He said he knew where my truck was and described it perfectly," Sollars said. "He asked me if I had a pen and paper and told me to write it down. I thought he was full of it at first."

The address was for a storage lot off Atherton Road near 24 Highway in Independence. Sollars reported the tip to investigators who got permission to inspect the property.

Inside there was a stolen tow dolly and a stolen John Deer gator. Outside, there was a stolen Kawasaki motorcycle, a stolen F350 truck, two stolen Dodge trucks and a stolen Harley Davidson tricycle bike.

Randall Bennett III, the man who was subleasing the lot, is charged with operating an auto salvage business without a license.

More charges are possible.

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