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Montebello Police Cruiser With Loaded AR-15, Shotgun Missing Nearly A Week

MONTEBELLO (CBSLA) — A police cruiser containing a loaded AR-15 rifle and a loaded shotgun is still missing Thursday after it was stolen from a Montebello police facility last weekend.

The Montebello Police Department made the theft public Wednesday, two days after the officer assigned to drive the vehicle found an empty parking stall where he left it last Friday.

The department first contacted local repair shops to make sure the patrol vehicle was not being repaired and reviewed surveillance video before reporting the theft. Fellow law enforcement agencies were also notified that a police vehicle was missing.

The SUV was last driven by authorized personnel on May 16, and returned to the facility at about 5 p.m. That same officer was assigned to drive the vehicle again Monday, when it was discovered missing.

Surveillance video showed the vehicle was taken from a public police department parking lot on May 17 at about 2:23 a.m. Police say an "unknown individual" was seen entering the vehicle and driving away in it in about 10 seconds.

The SUV was described as a black 2018 Ford Explorer with a white roof and doors. It was designated as Unit #9, with a California Exempt license plate number 1429238.

The vehicle says "Montebello Police" on both sides and on the rear. It is also equipped with an overhead bar light, and has the number 9 on the roof with the letters "MTB" on the roof and on the front fenders and on the rear.

A loaded AR-15 police rifle, a loaded police shotgun and a loaded less-lethal shotgun were all kept in the vehicle, locked and secured inside.

All keys for the SUV are accounted for. Police are working to find the SUV, using GPS and other "investigative tools available to law enforcement."

Anyone with information about the theft can call the Montebello Police Department at (323) 887-1313, but if it's seen parked or moving, call 911.

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