Theft prevention starts before you even leave your vehicle

The Nelsonville Police Department has noted an increase in reports of both property and money theft from unlocked vehicles that are both parked on the streets and in driveways. Theft prevention starts before you even leave your vehicle.

Never leave these things lying out on your seats, dashboard or floor:

  • Phone
  • Purse or wallet
  • Laptop (or its bag)
  • briefcase or backpack
  • Shopping bags
  • MP3 player or other small electronics
  • CDs if you still use them
  • Cash – yes, even loose change/coins
  • Your keys – it actually happens!

Car smash-and-grabs happen out of sight, so try to keep your car highly visible:

  • Park near other people. Go for busy lots where there’s plenty of pedestrian and vehicle traffic.
  • If you’ll be away from your car after dark, park in a well-lit area or near a lamppost.
  • Choose a lot with an attendant over one without.

Discourage thieves with anti-theft measures. By making your car a harder target you make it less desirable. So:

  • Always lock your doors and roll up your windows when you park.
  • Activate your security system if you have one.
  • Consider window tinting (if permitted by local laws), since it makes casing your car more difficult.
  • Use after-market measures, like mechanisms that lock the steering wheel to protect your car and alert thieves that you’ve taken extra security measures.
  • Don’t use the console or glove box as mobile lock boxes. These are obvious to thieves, too.

Theft is often a crime of opportunity. If thief breaks into your car and realizes they have the opportunity to steal your vehicle as well as your valuables, you face a much larger loss. Here are five things you should always do for car theft protection:

  • Always lock your vehicle (even while driving)
  • When parked, leave all windows – including the sunroof – closed
  • Know where you’re going and plan routes that avoid high crime areas whenever possible
  • Park in well-lit areas
  • Never leave your car unattended if it’s running

Everyone should always be alert and report any suspicious activity, “If you see something, say something” and contact the police!