A call to check on the welfare of someone after a vehicle was seen on the side of the road has resulted in the recovery of a stolen vehicle and an arrest.

On Friday, December 17, 2021 the Oneida County Sheriff's Office investigated a "check the welfare" complaint on the side of the roadway on State Route 69 in Lee, New York.  The Taberg Fire Department and other emergency responders arrived as well and assisted at the scene.

They located the vehicle near State Route 69 and Johns Street in the Town of Annsville and soon learned that the vehicle, a 2019 GMC Acadia, had allegedly been stolen earlier in the day from a driveway on State Route 26.

The Sheriff's Office says that the vehicle was recovered without obvious signs of damage.

Following investigation by the Oneida County Sheriff's Office 33-year-old Edward Michik of Lee was arrested and charged with the alleged theft.

Michik now faces a felony charge of Grand Larceny in the 3rd Degree.

He was brought to the Oneida County Jail pending a court appearance.

Details are not available about the specifics of this particular incident but law enforcement officials note that auto thefts are of the rise across the state.  In the first half of this year, according to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles, complaints about grand larceny rose 25 percent.  According to the DMV, "vehicle thefts rose 54 percent from 2019 to 2020."

Although vehicle thefts are usually highest during the summer months, the DMV urges drivers to keep their cars from being easy targets.  In the winter many leave their cars running while they quickly go into a convenience store.  Unfortunately there are opportunists waiting for moments like these to steal those running cars.

[EDITOR'S NOTE:  All persons charged with a crime are innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.]

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