Tips to Prevent Auto Theft
Do Not Leave Keys in Your Car
Do not leave or hide your car keys in or on your car. Every day we have vehicles that are stolen by using a key that the victim left in the car. Suspects are very skillful at finding the hidden key. Often a suspect who breaks into a vehicle to steal items will find the key or a firearm and the result is more crimes. Fontana’s Auto Theft Unit constantly has suspects who go to uptown areas and shopping centers to find cars that have hidden keys. Rarely do the have to spend much time looking.
Lock Your Vehicle & Turn On Your Alarm
When a car thief has to force entry by breaking a window, he takes more risks at getting caught, both on the scene and while driving. Driving around town in a vehicle with a shattered window is a pretty good indicator that the vehicle is stolen. Alarms do deter some thieves. A suspect will often just go to another unsecured or unprotected vehicle. If at all possible, please park your vehicle at night in a locked garage. Most of the vehicles stolen in Fontana are stolen in front of the owner's residence
Reduce Attention to Your Vehicle
Do not leave incentives in plain view in the passenger compartment of your vehicle. Firearms, packages, cellular phones, briefcases, and other expensive items draw attention to your vehicle. Never leave the title to your vehicle in the vehicle itself. You are making it easier for someone to forge your name and sell your vehicle.
Be Careful Who Test Drives Your Vehicle
If you are selling your vehicle yourself, be careful who test drives your vehicle. Do not assume the vehicle they are driving when they come to your house is theirs. It could be stolen. Some of our victims fail to get positive identification and the suspect takes their vehicle and leaves a stolen one in their driveway. Perhaps they switched keys and will come back to steal your vehicle later. Be alert.
Use Extra Security Devices
Any extra security devices are a good idea. There are lots of different types of anti-theft devices. Everything from steering wheel locks to hidden cut off switches can give you added protection. These are especially good tactics if you own one of the more popular vehicles stolen in Fontana (Honda, Toyota, Nissan, and many General Motors vehicles). These devices are even more necessary if you park in a large parking lot or deck.
Report Suspicious Activity
We frequently interview suspects whose parents, friends, and neighbors have knowledge or have seen the suspects driving numerous vehicles on their neighborhood streets. Kids use dent-pullers and screwdrivers to hot-wire ignitions. If friends pick up your kids and have windows that are broken from their vehicles, be suspicious. A screwdriver in the ignition or a missing ignition are significant indications that the vehicle is stolen.
Frequently, parents do not know who their kids are being given rides by until they receive a phone call from the police. Call us directly if you have any suspicions and give us as much information as possible, i.e., tag numbers, colors, type of vehicle, etc.
Do Not Leave Your Keys in Your Unlocked Vehicle
We still have suspects who hang around shopping centers, gas stations, convenience stores, day cares, etc., waiting for a victim who leaves his or her car keys in the vehicle while paying for gas, running in for a minute, etc. Do not be a victim. Lock your car and take the keys!