NT Police say they stopped five teenagers aged 13-15 years in an allegedly stolen car in Katherine using tyre spikes in a statement that seemingly contradicts an earlier police account of what happened following an alleged crime spree through Darwin and Humpty Doo early this morning.
Police spokesman Rob Cross said in a statement the boys, three aged 13, one 14 and the other 15, were arrested after a police officer on the Stuart Highway spotted the 2018 Hyundai Accent they had allegedly stolen from a home in Leanyer more than 300km away about 1:15 am.
He did not say what time the five were caught but that tyre spikes were used.
Mr Cross did not say if police intended to charge any of them nor did he detail any of their alleged crimes.
Northern Watch Commander Andrew Heath told ABC radio this morning the car had been found in Katherine, but police were still searching for the youths.
He said boys allegedly broke into the Leanyer house and stole several unnamed items along with the car, despite the owners waking up and calling the police.
Further, he said that at around 2:45 am the Humpty Doo Tavern’s security alarm went off as the youths allegedly stole alcohol and a knife.
“CCTV shows five, six people entering the tavern and possibly the hatchback that was stolen was involved,” Commander Heath said.
“At 4:30 this morning a glass door at a hairdressers was broken by some youths, and the same hatchback was seen in the area a short time later.
“At 5 am a number of glass doors were broken at the Diamond Village on Sabine Road [Millner], witnesses saw a group of youths that caused the damage and a short time later a police CCTV operator located the stolen Hyundai at Coles Express on Dripstone Road [Casuarina].
“The youth were seen smashing the glass door with a rock, however got into the car and left.”
“As recently as 5:30 [am], Puma Jingili reported that three youths tried to get into the shops and one apparently produced a knife and the man has managed to lock himself inside the shop,” he said.
Police want members of the public to come forward with information and they can call 131 444 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.