Car thefts creeping up again in southern Nevada - 8 News NOW

Car thefts creeping up again in southern Nevada

Posted: Updated:

LAS VEGAS -- In 2006 and 2007, Las Vegas was the worst city in the entire country for grand theft auto.

Metro Police tackled the problem, and the city dropped from number one down to number 27 last year on the National Insurance Crime Bureau Hot Spots list.

More than 22,000 cars were stolen in 2006, but that number dropped down to just above 7,900 last year.

However, so far this year, thieves have stolen more than 3,600 cars. That is a 15.4 percent increase from this time last year and California could be the culprit.

"When we have such increases in California that we've seen over the last year, we can almost bet that it will happen here in Las Vegas. We mirror them a lot in a lot of different things, and this is no different," Metro Police Capt. Robert Duvall with the Financial Crimes Bureau said.

On the National Insurance Crime Bureau's Top 10 Hot Spot list for cities with the most stolen cars, California is hotter than ever with nine of the top 10 spots.

That could be contributing to southern Nevada's problem this year. Metro Police have also seen an increase in crooks stealing mopeds, and because they have a vehicle identification number or VIN, those thefts are factored in.

Overall, car theft is down across the country to levels not seen since the late 1960s but police in Las Vegas realize there is always going to be some criminals who insist on driving off with someone else's set of wheels.

"We've got 60 to 70 major parking garages all located within just a couple of miles of each other. That always makes for a tempting place for thieves to do their work," Capt. Duvall said.

Metro Police use bait cars around the valley, and that has a sure way to bust thieves. Those cars are placed in areas of town where motor vehicle theft is on the rise.

Metro Police have cases where people's cars are stolen when they've run into a convenience store. Crooks have even hopped in and driven off when people are pumping gas.

So, officers remind people to never keep the car running, if you're not in it. Lock your car doors, and especially this time of year, don't leave your windows cracked too much.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KLAS. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.