The Calgary police auto theft team recovered 44 stolen vehicles worth more than $1.1 million during the past four months, officials said Thursday.
Officers on the auto theft team charged 53 suspects with 251 criminal offences related to stolen vehicles, possession of stolen property, weapons offences, drug possession and failing to comply with release conditions, police said.
The 53 offenders were wanted on a total of 211 warrants on unrelated crimes when they were arrested.
“The offenders that we are arresting in stolen vehicles are more often than not involved in multiple other crimes,” said Staff Sgt. Graeme Smiley.
“In Calgary, offenders use stolen vehicles as a means to facilitate other crimes that can cause great risk to the public. Members of our auto theft team, as well as our frontline patrol officers, see this concerning activity on a daily basis.”
Police are reminding Calgarians that as temperatures drop, thieves will be out looking for easy targets.
- Never leave a running vehicle unattended.
- Use a remote starter whenever possible and keep their vehicle locked.
- Use a steering wheel lock to deter thieves.
- Never leave spare keys or garage door openers in the vehicle.
- Never leave children or pets in a running vehicle.
- Never leave valuables, including IDs and bank cards, in a vehicle.