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'Significant auto theft ring' operating north of Twin Cities

Three people have been arrested so far.

A statement buried deep in a weekend Facebook post from the Chisago County Sheriff's Office suggests there's a "significant auto theft ring" plaguing the area.

It was part of a public announcement about a car theft in Stacy, which led to a dramatic high-speed pursuit and the arrest of three suspects last week:

As the update says, the vehicle was stolen right out of its owner's driveway in the early morning hours of Monday, Oct. 23. It was eventually recovered thanks to a PIT maneuver, which left some damage to a squad car (pictured above), but resulted in the arrest of the three suspects.

The post also reminded people to "lock your vehicles and remove valuables from inside the vehicle," and to "report any suspicious activity in your neighborhoods" to the sheriff's department. 

Stacy City Council member Tony Olivolo tells KSTP he's had three vehicles stolen recently from the local car dealership he operates – something that hasn't happened in "many years."

The station says the sheriff's office "declined to comment further" since investigations are still underway.

An average of 23 cars are stolen every day in Minnesota, the state's Commerce Department says. That's almost one every hour 

Last year, there were 8,649 motor vehicle thefts in the state, the vast majority of which were in metropolitan areas like the Twin Cities, the Department of Public Safety reports.

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