Cop Corner with S/Sgt Luis Gandolfi: September 6th, 2016

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How to better protect against vehicle theft

We’re getting a lot of reports lately about vehicles being stolen, more so than in months past.  In fact over the previous 60 days we’ve investigated twenty-seven thefts from all around the patrol area.  So what motivates these crimes?  There are a lot of factors that come into play but realistically most vehicles are stolen out of opportunity.  Keys left inside at a rural location, a vehicle left running outside of a convenience store, a vehicle left unlocked where the steering column is exposed.  These are all scenarios we’ve seen in the past.

 

Locking your vehicle is a good step but is it the first step you can take or are there other things you can do first from a prevention standpoint?  What about making sure you park it in a well lit area or remove all valuables from plain view?  Would an alarm system be beneficial?  Dash cams are becoming more popular these days, did you know that some dash cams record “silently” and that you can even remote in with a smart phone and see what’s happening inside your vehicle in real time?  That’s right, as long as you’re within the Wifi range of your home network you can remote in and record and see exactly what your camera is seeing.  What about home security?  Many manufacturers now provide alarm systems that monitor your garage, back lanes, etc. and alert you via text or phone if they detect something going on.  In some cases these alarm systems don’t even require monitoring or contracts and work independently with your home network.

 

The point is there are lots of options out there for you to consider.  Questions you can expect from us should your vehicle be stolen include how much gas was in the tank?  Any weapons inside the vehicle?  Do you have GPS monitoring of your vehicle?  What’s your plate number?  Any stickers or distinguishing marks?  Any mechanical issues with your vehicle, and so on.  Having these answers ready can certainly help speed the recovery process along.  Stay safe.

 

*Cop Corner is written and provided by S/Sgt Luis Gandolfi of the Bonnyville RCMP Detachment. It has not been altered from the author’s original content.