Vancouver Police (VPD) have arrested more than 25 suspects and recommended over 80 charges during a month-long “theft from auto” project in downtown Vancouver leading up to the Christmas holidays.
The arrests come after police noticed an increase in the number of reports made, concerning items stolen from vehicles in November 2017 (1,238) compared with the number during the same time period last year (892).
In a release, the VPD said that as a result of the increase – and in attempt to curb the amount of break-ins – a group of officers were brought together in the weeks before the holiday season to “focus on parking locations known to be targeted by property crime offenders.”
Specifically, the project focused on parking lots in the downtown core “where we’ve seen the highest number of theft reports,” said VPD Const. Jason Doucette.
Suspects were monitored and arrested after the necessary evidence was collected.
“We watched suspects go from car to car in search of property,” said Doucette.
With the suspects in custody, police discovered that many suspects were allegedly repeat offenders and committing additional offences such as being in possession of stolen property, and breaching court imposed conditions.
“Theft from auto is a preventable crime and we all have a role to play in decreasing the number of break-ins,” Doucette said. “Do not leave anything visible in your vehicle.”
The VPD is also encouraging people to familiarize themselves with GeoDash, an interactive mapping tool intended to enhance community awareness of policing activity in Vancouver, and to visit the VPD’s website additional crime prevention tips.