Center: A cable and chain had to be used to right the stolen pickup truck before removing it from 75 feet of water.
Bottom: The 1997 Ford truck is on its way to coming out of a watery coffin after being submerged for three weeks.
- 1, 2, 3-- PULL! Another vehicle stolen from Clay City repair shop thought to be resting in same pit as recently recovered 1997 Ford truck
The discovery of a submerged pickup truck in a strip pit confirmed information that it was one of two vehicles stolen from a repair shop in Clay City.
Divers will have to return at a later date to try and locate the second vehicle because of the cold and murky water.
On May 12, three vehicles, waiting for repair work, were stolen from Schepper's Tire and Battery Shop, 100 Main St., Clay City.
Members of the Clay County Sheriff's and Clay City Police departments worked the investigation.
One of the vehicles, a 4-wheeler, was quickly recovered, but a pickup truck and a car remained missing until people were brought in for questioning at the Clay County Sheriff's Department. One individual provided information that the two vehicles were drove into a strip pit located at N. C.R. 1025 E.
On Tuesday, four conservation officers, Paul Harden, Lt. Ken Hutchinson, Mike Gregg and Jay Baker, located a 1997 Ford dual cab pick up truck that had been submerged in 75 feet of water for up to three weeks.
A large wrecker from Curtis Garage was used to remove the vehicle from the water.
Although it came out of the water with its wheels on the wall of the pit, the first attempt to bring the water-logged truck to the surface failed when its weight caused the chain to break.
It took divers another 30 to 45 minutes to locate the vehicle and re-attach the repaired chain.
The recovery effort became dangerous when the truck came up sideways and a diver climbed on top of the vehicle to connect a cable to the other side of the truck's undercarriage once it was partially lifted out of the water.
With two connections on the vehicle, the truck was "righted," and pulled up the pit wall on its wheels.
The recovered vehicle will enable charges to be filed and aid in the prosecution of individuals believed to be involved in the theft.