Holyrood councillor warns of backhoe bandits

By Mark Squibb/August 19, 2022

In a public safety update during the July 26 council meeting, Holyrood councillor Bruce King encouraged folks to be on the lookout for backhoe bandits — people who use backhoes to steal ATMs from commercial properties.

“There’s been a rash of backhoe bandits, and they’ve been hitting everywhere,” said King. “They just hit Steady Brook and Corner Brook, an Orange Store and a Credit Union, and they’re still roaming around. So, we need to caution, especially construction companies, and ourselves, that have heavy equipment, that they should do everything possible to make sure that these things can’t be started. And we have a lot of businesses here with ATMs, we have a bank with an ATM right next to the street. So, people need to be cautious, because if it can happen to St. Johns one week, and can happen in Corner Brook the next week, it could very well happen here.”

He also asked residents to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.

“If you see a backhoe going down the road at two o’clock in the morning, he’s probably not going to a legitimate job,” said King. “He’s probably going to go take out some money, and he’s not going to use his card.”

Deputy Mayor Curtis Buckle joked that he could, in fact, be going to fix a water leak.

“Our Public Works staff were out a couple of weeks ago at two o’clock in the morning with the backhoe, so don’t call and report them because they got work to get done,” cracked Buckle.

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