Cops: Derry Township men accused in ATV and dirt bike thefts
Two Derry Township men were arrested Tuesday by the state police specialized auto theft unit for a rash of all-terrain vehicle and dirt bike thefts since mid-December.
Seth A. McIntire, 20, and Cody E. Stiffey, 24, are charged before District Judge Mark Bilik with multiple counts of theft, receiving stolen property, altering vehicle identification numbers and burglary in connection with the thefts that have occurred throughout the township since Dec. 17.
According to an affidavit of probable cause filed by Trooper Jason Morgan, a member of the auto theft task force based in Harmar, investigators caught a break Jan. 10 when one of the victims, Jonathan Zayac, of Bairdstown Road was waiting for troopers to arrive at his home to make a report on his stolen 2005 Honda ATV when he saw the suspects aboard two ATVs, including Zayac’s, drive past heading north toward Route 22.
“(While) Zayac was awaiting PSP arrival, he observed what he thought to be his ATV travelling with a side-by-side matching the description of a (previously stolen) Polaris. Zayac pursued the machines until he lost sight of them on Route 22,” Morgan said.
Morgan reported that the incident enabled state police to develop information that led them to a residence in the 500 block of Stone Jug Road near Keystone Raceway, just off Route 22, where some of the stolen vehicles were believed hidden.
When troopers were arriving Jan. 13 to question the residents, Morgan reported that “Seth McIntire had shown at the residence and made incriminating statements about his involvement causing him to be detained.”
To date, troopers have charged the pair with the theft of three vehicles: a 2009 Yamaha dirt bike stolen from a residence in the 200 block of Pandora Road; Zayac’s ATV; and a 2017 Polaris Razor stolen from a residence on Pizza Barn Road.
Another alleged theft, a 2012 Yamaha motorcycle stolen Dec. 17 from a residence on House Road, remains under investigation. Troopers recovered pieces and parts of other machines, and those cases remain under investigation.
Inside a barn at the Stone Jug residence, troopers discovered a deconstructed ATV that had been spray painted white, and had its engine removed, Morgan wrote.
“Examination showed its vehicle identification number along the front cross of the frame had been ground off,” Morgan wrote.
“Asked about the VIN being defaced/destroyed, McIntire confessed that he destroyed the VIN by sanding it with sandpaper. He painted the quad and was preparing to redo the machine,” Morgan wrote.
Troopers reported the Polaris ATV was recovered from Stiffey and had been kept hidden in a vacant garage in the village of Byrd’s Crossing.
McIntire and Stiffey were released on $10,000 unsecured bond pending a preliminary hearing Feb. 20.
Paul Peirce is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Paul at 724-850-2860, [email protected] or via Twitter @ppeirce_trib.