CHICAGO — Eight school buses were stolen from the Far South Side of Chicago overnight and driven to a salvage yard, where they were cut apart and shredded into a two-story pile of scrap, police said Friday.
The name of the Sunrise Bus company could be seen among the shards of metal at SRV Metal Scrapper, police said. Three people were taken into custody.
The 40-foot-long buses, capable of seating 75 people, were stolen sometime overnight from the bus company’s yard and were not discovered missing until Friday morning, police said.
The buses were all equipped with GPS tracking devices, and police were able to track “their entire movement” to the scrap yard, police said.
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When officers arrived, several people who apparently worked in the scrap yard ran into a building, police said.
Officers initially apprehended one person and later took two others into custody.
“There was a pile of shredded school buses about two-stories high,” one police official said. Some pieces were large enough that police could see the “Sunrise bus logo,” the official said.
Engines and transmissions from the buses had already been cut in half, and the seats tossed in a “big pile of scrap.”
Police were searching for the owner of the yard.
Greg Bonnett, president and co-owner of Sunrise, said, “In 40 years I have never heard of anything like this.”
The buses weighed between 17,000 to 20,000 pounds each, he said.