High-end vehicle thefts up 60 per cent year over year in Hamilton: police

Hamilton Police say high-end vehicle theft investigations in 2022 are up year over year across the city.

In a release Thursday morning, investigators say pickup trucks have been the top target of the auto thieves, with vehicles in Waterdown and Ancaster most affected.

So far this year, 195 high-end vehicles have been stolen in the Hamilton-area, an almost a 60 per cent increase over the same period in 2021.

“This crime trend is not isolated to the Hamilton area, it’s occurring in neighbouring jurisdictions,” a police spokesperson said in a release.

“In reviewing these incidents, the suspects are taking the vehicles during overnight hours where there are few members of the public out.”

Read more: Pickups popular with thieves in Alberta

Story continues below advertisement revealed insurance companies reported around 10,900 car theft claims in 2021, which works out to a car going missing every 48 minutes.

The site, which allows users to compare premiums, says that SUVs are now making up for 48 per cent of the cars stolen.

Hamilton Police say they’ve been stepping up patrols in the identified target areas in recent weeks.

Ford F-150s, Dodge Durangos and a variety of Jeeps, as well as Range Rovers, have been specific model types most preyed upon.

Police have also put out a video on how to keep a vehicle from becoming a target.

Tips include keeping key fobs in signal-blocking pouches and never leaving cars running while unattended.

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Parking in well-lit areas, removing valuables in a trunk, using a garage, backing into driveways at home and dropping business cards inside doors are just some other theft prevention tips police are recommending to owners.

Police say vending parts, committing other crimes, and cloning — when vehicles are stolen, given a fraudulent identification number and then sold to unsuspecting persons — are just some of the reasons autos are stolen.

Ignition and fuel kill switches, steering wheel locks, and vehicle tracking systems are investments police suggest for owners looking for protection devices.

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