Car Thefts On The Rise, Is Your Vehicle Vulnerable? 11/1/13
CBS 7 News
November 1, 2013
ODESSA-Nearly 100 vehicles were stolen in Odessa in two months, now Odessa Police are asking us to warn you about habits that could leave you and your vehicle vulnerable.
There were 75 car thefts in Odessa in September and October alone. OPD says leaving cars unattended and running in the mornings or at stores is partly to blame and it could get you a ticket.
"There’s a lot of people here and they’ll take a car if they see it on and nobody in it,” said Sam Estrada, who said he sometimes leaves his car unattended.
It’s illegal to leave your keys in the ignition whether your car is on or off -- OPD detectives have been cracking down to reduce theft.
"There are thieves right now going around and targeting vehicles that are unattended,” said Odessa Police Corporal Steve LeSueur.
In just a few minutes at this Texaco -- two drivers walked out and left their car running. Sam Estrada was one of them.
"Is it worth the risk of the ticket?”
"Not at all, you think it’s quicker to get in and out, but police will get you,” Estrada said.
The practice could cost you with a theft or ticket of up to $500.
Odessa Police say it is also technically against the law to leave cars with keyless ignition systems running if the car is unattended. Detectives recommend that you not leave keys anywhere inside your vehicle, as that can also be a target for thieves.