The incident happened last week.
Two people have been arrested on suspicion of stealing plant equipment from a site in Clay Cross.
At around 5.45pm on Thursday, officers received a call about some suspicious activity on Coney Green Road.
Police in the area spotted what they believed was the stolen JCB in the Palterton area, just before 6pm, and it was abandoned in fields near to the Twin Oaks Hotel.
A search was carried out and a 20 year old man and a 16 year old boy were arrested on suspicion of theft nearby.
Both the man and boy, who are from Chesterfield, have been questioned and released under investigation while inquiries continue.