VicPD reports a 30 per cent rise in theft from vehicles throughout their jurisdiction. (Black Press Media file photo)

VicPD warns of 30% increase in theft from vehicles over last year

Rockland thefts jumped 236% while Harris Green, Downtown and Esquimalt saw drops

Thefts from vehicles in the Victoria Police Department’s jurisdiction are up 30 per cent from 2018, according to a department release.

Of particular concern is that thefts from vehicles have risen significantly in some neighbourhoods such as Rockland where a jump to 37 so far this year, up from 11 reported in 2018, translates to a 236 per cent increase.

Statistics by neighbourhood as reported by VicPD.

“Our belief is that many of these thefts from vehicles are being committed by a small group of prolific offenders,” Chief Constable Del Manak said in a news release. “We are keeping the public updated on crime trends in their neighbourhoods so that they can work with us to reduce the likelihood of victimization. That’s why we are asking people to remove valuables from their vehicles to reduce the likelihood of these crimes occurring in the first place.”

READ ALSO: VicPD warns downtown visitors not to leave valuables in car after large theft

Thefts from vehicle are up in all but three neighbourhoods; Harris Green, Downtown and the Township of Esquimalt saw drops in theft from vehicles.

Thefts from vehicles are often crimes of opportunity that tend to happen during later hours. VicPD encourages a “9 p.m. ritual” of ensuring all valuables are removed from your vehicle after 9 p.m. to help prevent thefts. They also recommend finding a safe spot, locking the vehicle, removing all valuables and using anti-theft devices.

For more information on what you can do to help prevent thefts from vehicles visit vicpd.ca/preventautocrime.

Police ask anyone who spots someone looking into or trying door handles of vehicles to call 911.

READ ALSO: ‘Significant changes’ expected in Victoria police services, says VicPD chief



c.vanreeuwyk@blackpress.ca

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