POLICE are concerned about copycat thieves after a stolen vehicle was used to ram a Ballarat business overnight - the second ram raid in the past two days.
Another vehicle was used to break into VicRoads in Wendouree late on Monday night, but police say the two crimes are not related.
Detective Senior Constable Barry Hills for the Ballarat Criminal Investigation Unit said the latest ram raid, at the rear of the Telstra Store in the Bridge Mall, occurred just after 12am this morning.
"Uniformed members have observed damage to the door at the Telstra Store, but it wasn't until 8am this morning that we realised the damage to the door had been caused by a vehicle which had been reversed into the door a number of times.
"As a result, two males have entered the store and stolen a number of items including iPhones and other mobile phones and accessories valued at several thousand dollars.
Detective Senior Constable Hills said older-model Mitsubishi wagon used in the ram raid was stolen from Ballarat Toyota last night and dumped near Sam's Warehouse shortly after the break-in.
It was found with rear and side damage this morning.
Despite the similarities - and with no arrest for the previous ram raid - he said police were not linking the two crimes beyond a potential copycat theft.
"At this stage we believe it's unrelated, it's two separate entities (with) separate vehicles," he said.
"Maybe somebody's trying to copy someone else - we don't know."
Detective Senior Constable Hills said the vehicle had done a number of "dry runs" shortly after midnight in an effort to break the door.
"Anyone passing through the Little Bridge Street area at the time, we would say to them to come forward and let us know if they saw or heard anything overnight."
Staff have confirmed to The Courier that the Telstra Store will remain open today.
Meanwhile police are still hunting two men who used a white Ford Courier dual cab ute to ram the entrance to VicRoads at midnight on Monday.
The men broke into the building but fled empty handed.
Police say both men were wearing hooded jumpers, one white and one red, and were in their late teens or early 20s.
Anyone with information on either crime can call the Ballarat Criminal Investigation Unit on 5336 6080 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.