From January 1 to February 20, of this year, 87 cars were stolen in the City of Newport News. Of those 87, 55 - over 63% of those vehicles were either not locked, the keys were in the car, or the car was left running and unattended - most likely due to the cold weather and the desire to warm up the vehicle.
“Fortunately, due to the hard work of our investigative team, a lot of stolen cars are recovered. Out of the 87 mentioned above, 59 have been recovered and returned to their owners,” said Assistant Chief Eric Randall. “However, this requires extensive police manpower - manpower that could be used elsewhere to keep our city safe, if citizens simply would not leave their cars running unattended with the keys inside or would just make sure their cars are always locked,” added Randall.
The Newport News Police Department is requesting your help in fighting vehicle theft. Please lock your car at all times. Don’t leave extra keys anywhere in the car, and although it might be uncomfortable, stay in your locked car while waiting for it to warm up. The NNPD does not recommend you watch your car from a window inside your house. It does not take long for someone to approach the car, get inside and take off. And because they may be armed, you should never attempt to stop them. “A life is certainly not worth a vehicle,” said Randall. The NNPD further advises, don’t leave valuables in plain sight in your vehicle, park in a lit area, and if possible invest in an anti-theft device. Please report any stolen vehicle immediately by calling 911.
Please do your part to help the NNPD stop vehicle theft. Lock your car at all times and don’t leave an unattended car running.