Putnam County Sheriff Robert L. Langley, Jr. reports that Putnam and Westchester Counties have been experiencing a huge spike in auto thefts recently. Auto theft is not isolated to this area and in fact, there has been an alarming increase in these thefts throughout the state.
The first step to preventing auto theft starts with you! Many of these thefts occur because owners are leaving their vehicles unlocked with key fobs in the vehicle parked at home, work, and at car dealerships. This allows offenders to simply go through neighborhoods in the middle of the night, open car doors and steal those that are easily susceptible to theft. Therefore, never leave your keys/key fobs in your car as this is an open invitation for all auto thieves to take your car or truck.
Secondly, always lock your vehicle and ensure your valuables are removed or hidden away. A vehicle that is not locked is an open opportunity for someone to steal your vehicle or valuables and identification within your vehicle that contain confidential information about you which can be used for identity theft and related credit or financial crime. And although there have currently been no reported burglaries related to auto thefts of cars containing key fobs never leave your house keys in the vehicle or attached to your key fobs.
Please note that investigation has shown that the majority of vehicle thefts and vehicle break-ins have occurred between the hours of 3:00 am and 5:00 am. Please report any suspicious activity or persons and report it immediately to your local law enforcement agency or dial 911 regardless of the hours of the day. Sheriff Langley would like to assure everyone that this is not something we take lightly nor should our community.
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