Hamilton Police confirm an increase in vehicle thefts and are reminding people to heed some crime prevention tips.
Police says they received 1,552 stolen auto reports last year, up from 1,453 in 2017.
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Light-duty trucks continue to be the most commonly stolen vehicle in Hamilton, with the 2001-2007 GMC Sierra and Chevrolet Silverado leading the way.
In total, 1,022 trucks were stolen last year, compared to 486 automobiles and 45 motorcycles.
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Among other things, police remind vehicle owners to lock doors, remove valuables from view and park in well travelled and well-lit areas.
Police note that vehicles are stolen for various reasons such as joyriding or use in the commission of some other crime and criminal profit such as stripping parts.
Hamilton Police offer the following tips to help keep your vehicle safe:
- Always lock your vehicle and close your windows.
- Park in well-lit, well-attended areas whenever possible.
- Remove GPS, cell phone and other electronic accessories from view when leaving your vehicle.
- Lock all valuables in your trunk, out of sight. If you can’t, take your valuables with you.
- When parking, turn your wheels and set your parking brake to make towing your vehicle more difficult.
- Permanently etch the Vehicle Identification Number onto the windows of your car.
- Utilize an anti-theft device such as a steering wheel lock, a kill switch, an immobilizer, alarm and/or tracking system.
- Use your garage for parking your vehicle.
- Leave the original vehicle ownership, insurance or your driver’s licence in your vehicle.
- Hide spare vehicle keys in the vehicle or on the vehicle’s exterior. Thieves know where to find them.
- Leave your vehicle running.