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Kelowna residents could be inviting car and bike theft

May 15, 2013 - 1:38 PM

Kelowna's property owners are cautioned that careless behavior helps thieves get their job done.

RCMP say over 70 per cent of car theft cases this year started with unlocked vehicles. According to the Kelowna RCMP First Quarter Report released today, incidents of car and bike theft in 2013 are particularly common in downtown and Rutland areas.

Constable Kris Clark says, "it's often when people park for a short period of time to go into a store and then realize their vehicle has been ransacked." The downtown areas hardest hit are along the beach, City Park and Abbott Street.

"That's where we see most transients as well," he says.

In Rutland it's more common for vehicle plates to be stolen, says Clark.

"They either have stolen or uninsured vehicles and use stolen plates to mask that offence," he says.

A bit of common sense goes a long way to keep these numbers down and clean up Kelowna's streets. Police say not only is it important to lock your vehicle but make sure you take anything of value with you or at least make sure it's out of sight from opportunistic eyes.

Cyclists are equally responsible for preventing bike theft, police say.

In fact, RCMP say it is the duty of the cyclist to make their bike appear "undesirable" when left unattended. This means removing your front wheel or saddle in addition to locking it to a bike rack. Using multiple locks makes it that much harder for thieves to make away with it. The City of Kelowna has installed a number of bike racks with superior security features. And if you ever hope to relocate a stolen bike, make sure to record the serial number.

2013 First quarter report on Crime for Kelowna:

Property crime decreased by 10 per cent

Personal offences and assaults decreased by 25 per cent

Other criminal code charges decreased by 16 per cent

However, drug charges increased by 60 per cent compared to last year's first quarter due to the Green Team's proactive monitoring of illegal grow operations.

Map of Kelowna showing thefts from motor vehicles for the first quarter of 2013.
Map of Kelowna showing thefts from motor vehicles for the first quarter of 2013.
Image Credit: Kelowna RCMP

To contact the reporter for this story, email Julie Whittet at jwhittet@infotelnews.ca or call (250)718-0428.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013
InfoTel News Ltd

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