Spokane Police Asking for your Help Preventing Car Thefts

Cpl. Teresa Fuller

Sunday, November 5, 2017 at 9:48 p.m.

The Spokane Police Department is reminding drivers not to leave their vehicles running and unattended.

As we approach the cold winter months in Spokane, the Spokane Police Department is asking for your help in preventing car thefts. Every year we receive numerous reports of vehicles stolen while warming up, but unoccupied. The citation for Unattended Motor Vehicle is $136.

Already in the last two weeks, four vehicles have been stolen, either with the keys left inside the vehicle or while warming up with the keys in the ignition. Most vehicle thefts are crimes of opportunity, so don't give the thieves the opportunity to steal, crash, or dismantle your car. We commonly hear of vehicles stolen while left running and unattended at homes, gas stations, convenience stores and ATMs.

The best way to approach cold morning commutes is to start the vehicle and remain with it while using a scraper to remove frost from windows.

Residents should also use the following tips to help prevent the theft of vehicles, which represent a relatively large investment for most people:

  • Park in well-lighted areas and always lock your car when it is unattended.
  • Never leave your keys in the ignition or elsewhere in the vehicle.
  • If you have a garage, use it rather than parking outside where your vehicle is more vulnerable.
  • Don’t leave packages, purses, electronics, bags/briefcases, automatic garage door openers, personal papers and mail or other items in plain view in your vehicle which can invite a break-in and lead to vehicle theft, home burglary and identification theft.
  • Never hide a second set of keys in your vehicle. Extra keys can easily be found, especially by experienced thieves who know the hiding places in vehicles.

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Officer Steve Anderson