Theives haul away $200,000 worth of motors from Beach boat business

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Captain Max King’s Marine is host to many expensive boats, but it’s not watercraft that was taken — just their motors.

Virginia Beach police say thieves struck the boat dealership Sunday night and hauled out a hefty load worth about $200,000.

Owner Max King tells 10 On Your Side security cameras captured burglars entering through a hole he says they cut in his fence.

“They were professionals,” King said.

Photos: Boat dealership break-in

Cameras show one burglar reaching out and turning a camera away. King says other cameras were spray painted or covered with a box. Minutes later, the thieves cut the wires at an electrical box, shutting off the spotlights King says are always on when it’s dark.

Police call the work extremely thorough, making the job of tracking them down all the more difficult.

“I have to shake everybody’s hand and say, ‘Look, I’m doing everything I can to protect your boat,’ and all that stuff and it’s frustrating.”

King believes the group may have known about motors. It appears they went so far as to move boats out of the way to gain access only to watercraft equipped with a Yamaha F300. King says that’s a more expensive, more complex model. He says thieves passed over any F300s that had more miles on them, selectively picking six new models. The models will cost about $30,000 each to replace.

“It’s very frustrating to know they can violate someone’s property like that. It’s crazy.”

King believes at some point, the burglars drove a vehicle onto the property. Each engine is more than five feet tall and weighs 600 pounds, so he guesses they used special equipment to load up then took off.

“There was a big truck or trailer, something that pulled out of here.”

King is hoping someone on Shore Drive who drove past or lives near the Ocean Park neighborhood may have noticed activity Sunday night. That could lead to an arrest. He says the cameras captured the thieves entering shortly after 7 p.m., and they didn’t leave until after 1 a.m.

“What happened here? On Sunday night? Were you walking your dog? Were you jogging? Were you out and about? What did you see go on here at my property?”