Brian P. Levesque, Chief of Police
249 Russells Mills Road
South Dartmouth, MA 02748
For Immediate Release
Friday, July 12, 2019
Contact: Benjamin Paulin
Dartmouth Police Remind Residents to Lock Their Car Doors at Night During National Vehicle Theft Prevention Month
DARTMOUTH – Chief Brian Levesque and the Dartmouth Police Department would like to remind residents this month to properly secure their vehicles to prevent theft and avoid being easy targets for thieves.
July is National Vehicle Theft Prevention Month and according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than three-quarters of a million vehicles were stolen in the United States in 2017. The value of these stolen vehicles is nearly $6 billion.
“Many vehicles that are stolen or broken into are chosen by thieves because they are easy targets,” Chief Levesque said. “These crimes can often be prevented by locking your doors, removing your valuables and parking in well-lit areas.”
The NHTSA and Dartmouth Police remind vehicle owners to use common sense when parking and exiting your vehicle.
- Take your keys. Don’t leave them in your vehicle.
- Close all windows and lock all doors.
- Never leave valuables in your vehicle, and if you do, make sure they are out of sight.
- Never leave credit cards/debit cards, cash or your wallet or purse inside of your vehicle overnight.
- Park in well-lit areas or preferably inside a garage, if possible. Install lights with motion sensors near where you park your vehicle.
- Get in the routine of double-checking that your vehicle is locked and secure each night around 9 p.m. This is known as the 9 p.m. Routine.
If your vehicle has been stolen or broken into, follow these steps:
- Call 911 to report a vehicle theft or break-in. A copy of the police report and/or a case number will be needed to provide to your insurance company.
- You may be asked to provide the license plate number, make, model and color of the car, the VIN number and any identifying characteristics.
- Contact your insurance company to file a claim within 24 hours of when you discovered your vehicle was stolen or broken into.
- If you find your vehicle before authorities, contact the police immediately and then your insurance company.