Floyd County Jail
(Aurora, Ind.) – It took less than a day for police to get a major break in the case of two cars being stolen from an Aurora automobile dealership.
A 2009 Dodge Charger and 2010 Dodge Nitro were swiped from Car Country on U.S. 50 in Aurora March 10.
Two of the four people believed to be involved have been arrested. They are Cody Wimp, of New Albany, Indiana and Charles Phelps, of Henryville, Indiana.
“Hopefully those kids learn their lesson and won’t do anything like this again,” Car County general manager Chris Schwab told Eagle 99.3
The break in the case came the day after the theft when Wimp, 18, was driving the stolen Charger in a police pursuit in New Albany.
At first, Wimp told Aurora Police detectives he had received the car from a friend, but later admitted to police that he and four friends had attempted to make a trip to a motorcycle shop in Versailles.
Dearborn County Law Enforcement
The group was unable to find the shop they were looking for and ended up in Aurora the night of the theft. That’s when they got the idea to throw a rock through the glass front door of Car Country’s office, grab the keys, and take off with the two vehicles.
On their way out of town, the crew stole two license plates from vehicles at Enterprise Rent-A-Car on U.S. 50 in Lawrenceburg and put them on the stolen Dodges.
The stolen Nitro would be recovered in an alley in New Albany on March 22. Police lifted fingerprints off of the vehicle and stolen plates, matching them to 19-year-old Charles Phelps.
“We were fortunate we were able to recover the both of the vehicles with no damage, just some mileage put on them,” said Aurora Police Detective Vernon McBride.
“We’re glad to get them back with minimal loss,” Schwab said.
New Albany Police told McBride that Wimp has been known to commit a number of vehicle thefts in the New Albany area and Phelps is known as one of his associates.
Wimp and Phelps were spotted with two other men on surveillance video inside the Valero gas station on U.S. 50 a short time before the Car County thefts. Police are still trying to positively identify the other two suspects, said McBride.
Phelps and Wimp each face charges of Burglary (Class C Felony), Theft (Class D Felony), Criminal Mischief (Class A Misdemeanor), and two counts of Auto Theft (Class D Felony).
Wimp remains held at the Floyd County Jail to face charges relating to the police pursuit and an outstanding warrant. On $35,000 surety and $3,500 cash bond.
Phelps is housed at the Dearborn County Law Enforcement Center following his arrest Monday on a $150,000 surety and $2,500 cash bond.
"I’d like to thank the Aurora Police Department for their work and diligence in the recovery. Vernon McBride did a good job," Schwab said.