The discovery of a junked car in a ditch in Walker County leads authorities to a county-wide search for some teen-aged joyriders.
Six cars were stolen off one car lot on Thursday night.
And while all of the cars have been recovered...
They are all completely destroyed.
Randall Cagle, owner of Cagle's Used Cars said, "All weekend all I could think was 'Why?' I mean, yeah. Grab a car, go on a joyride and leave it on the side of the road. Yes, but, they totally destroyed these cars."
Cagle got a rude awakening early Friday morning. A police officer called to tell him one of the cars that should have been parked securely on his lot was wrecked at the end of the road.
Cagle said, "So I got up, got my clothes my wife said I'm going, too. So we came by the lot and I said, 'Man, we've been wiped out.' It's not just one, I though we had six cars missing."
So authorities began the hunt for the remaining five cars. Cagle said, "In about an hour a guy called and said, you've got a, there's a truck with your tags sitting down here at Keith's grocery on the side of the road."
But the other four cars were still gone. Cagle added, "A lady called and said, 'Look. There are a lot of mailboxes down on Harrisburg Road have been mowed down.'"
People in that area reported seeing some cars deep on the mountain. Forestry officials had to help pull out the remaining four cars. And the Cagles are out at least $30,000. So now the focus is on the suspects.
Sheriff Steve Wilson said, "Maybe six of them, there may have been seven, eight involved. A car dropped them off, they broke into the business and stole the keys and then drove off from the lot in six vehicles."
Two detectives have been working on this case since Friday morning and a few names have come up. Detectives are also looking at stolen cars from a lot in Rossville and another in LaFayette. Sheriff Wilson added, "There could be a possibility that all three are connected. And again it could be that it's all isolated."
Sheriff Wilson hopes one of the joy-riders may brag to someone about what they did...
The sheriff's office put up a 500-dollar reward for anyone who has information that will lead to an arrest.