on September 28, 2017 by test_editor in Archive_2017, Print Articles, September, Comments (0)

September 28, 2017: Cst. Neilly’s Neighbourhood; Tips to avoid theft from vehicles.

September 28, 2017: Cst. Neilly’s Neighbourhood;
Tips to avoid theft from vehicles.

By Cst. Dawn Neilly.

Do you own/rent/drive a vehicle? Do you park it in your driveway, on the street, in parking lots or parking garages? Do you, all the time or from time to time, leave things in your car? If so, you are a potential victim of theft – either the theft of your vehicle or of its contents.

Thefts from vehicles in particular are rampant in Ottawa. Look at the number of accessible cars on the street and you can imagine why they’re a popular target. It takes no time at all to see if a door is unlocked or to do a “smash and grab” if the doors are locked.

Here’s a scenario for you to think about: you’ve parked your car at the mall while you go in to do a quick bit of shopping. Because you’re only going to be gone a few minutes, you don’t bother locking it. You’ve just come from the gym and you’ve left your gym bag on the back seat. A guy down on his luck comes by, sees his opportunity, rifles through the bag and finds a pair of runners that are a nice replacement for the worn out ones he’s wearing which he leaves for you in your bag. True story.

You can imagine that if you’re someone who has no money and vehicles that have stuff in them are easy to break into, they’re a temptation that can’t be resisted. You might think there’s nothing to get too excited about in your car – smelly runners? – but to someone else it’s a gold mine.

A smash and grab is a simple operation for the thief, but it’s going to leave you with a major headache. The cure? Keep your vehicle locked, leave nothing visible inside (hiding something under a blanket doesn’t count) and put an “All Valuables Removed”card (I have some at the Wellington Community Police Centre) in the window to make it very clear you’re not worth the effort.

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