Skip to main content

Police investigate wave of F-150 pickup truck thefts


At least eight pickup truck owners in the region reported their vehicles were stolen this week, seven of which were Ford F150s.

The thefts come on the heels of a police investigation in Italy, where hundreds of stolen vehicles from Canada destined for the Middle East were seized.

Sean and Stephanie Gordon lost both their F-150 truck and equipment for their construction business.

Sean said he looked out the window at 5:30 in the morning on Monday, as he had a habit of doing most mornings, and spotted an empty driveway.

"The truck was gone," said Sean, who was scheduled to leave with Stephanie for a project in Northern Ontario that morning.

Stephanie said the truck bed had "tons of materials inside." "Most of our tools [were] packed up and ready to go," she added.

The Gordons were among four pickup truck owners in Barrie and four others in Dufferin County who lost their Ford vehicles to thefts this week, likely through mimicking the signals of their keyfobs. Insurance expert Daniel Ivans confirmed the recent increase in claims from auto thefts.

"In 2018, the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) reported approximately $160 million in auto thefts in Ontario alone. In 2023, what we saw was over $700 million in auto thefts," Ivans explained.

Dealerships say that new Ford F-150 models remain one of the most targeted vehicles among thieves in our region. Other vehicles known to be targeted by thieves include Ram trucks, Toyota Highlanders, and Lexus RX SUV's.

Vehicle owners are urged to standardize the use of anti-theft devices, such as steering locks and Faraday boxes.

"We still put the keys in a fairaday box," said Ford Finance Manager Shelly MacConnell, adding that Faraday boxes should 'definitely' be standard when purchasing a new vehicle with a push-to-start mechanism.

Barrie police echoed that message.

"People need to adhere to the advice that's being offered," said Communications Coordinator Peter Leon. "They have to do what they can do to keep their vehicle where it belongs."

An IBC spokesperson told CTV News that some insurance providers are applying surcharges for covering vehicles at the highest risk of theft. Other insurers waive that surcharge if the policyholder takes the necessary action to protect their vehicle.

The investigation to find the suspects involved in this week's thefts remains ongoing. Meanwhile, police are trying to determine if any of the stolen vehicles recovered in Italy belong to local victims. Top Stories

Stay Connected