The Sheriff’s Combined Auto Theft Task Force, (a grant-funded program from the Texas Auto Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority) would like to remind citizens of some useful tips to stay safe and help prevent auto burglary and theft:

1. Hide your valuables from plain sight to avoid attracting thieves.

2. Lock your vehicle and take your keys. Approximately 50% of all vehicles stolen were left unlocked.

3. Never hide a second set of keys in or on your vehicle. Extra keys are easily found by thieves.

4. Park in well-lighted areas and attended parking lots. More than half of all vehicle thefts occur at night and thieves tend to target unattended lots.

5. Never leave your vehicle running, even if you will only be away for a minute. Vehicles are commonly stolen at convenience stores, gas stations, ATMs, etc. Many vehicles are also stolen on cold mornings when the owner leaves the vehicle running to warm up. Leaving your key in an unattended motor vehicle is a crime in Texas.

6. Close your vehicle windows completely. Don’t make it easier for a thief to enter your vehicle.

7. Don’t leave documents with important personal details such as the title or insurance card in your vehicle. A thief can use these to sell your stolen vehicle. File the title and registration receipt at your home or office, and carry your insurance card in your purse or wallet.

8. Your vehicle may be more vulnerable when you park outside. If you have a garage, use it. Lock your garage as well as your vehicle doors.

9. Always use your emergency brake when parking. In addition to ensuring safety, using the emergency brake makes your vehicle harder to tow.

10. Be aware of your surroundings. As you approach your vehicle, have your keys out and ready and be observant of anyone in the vicinity. Do not hesitate to go back to the store if you feel the situation is unsafe.

For more information, contact: Robert Curbelo (512) 854-9735, [email protected] 

 

Submitted By: Kristen Dark, Sr. Public Information Officer (512) 318-5669

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