Vehicle Security & Burglary Prevention

Auto Theft Facts
  • Nearly half of all stolen vehicles are left unlocked and approximately 20% are stolen with the keys in the ignition.
  • Many people do not realize leaving your keys in the ignition with the motor running is against the law.
  • Many vehicle thefts occur at the owners residence.  Other "hot spots" are malls, shopping centers, hotels and churches.
  • Most stolen vehicles are at least four years old.
  • More than two-thirds of all auto theft occur at night.
  • Anti theft devices stop many amateurs and slow down professionals, making that target more difficult.

Types of Car Thieves

The Amateur

  • Steals a vehicle to get from point A to point B (joy ride).
  • Steals for drug money.
  • Steals to commit another crime.
  • Steals for gang initiation.

Notice: Driving a friend or family members vehicle without permission can be reported as a theft.

The Professional

  • Steals for parts resale (chop shop).
  • Steals to change the identity of the vehicle for resale to unsuspecting victim.
  • Steals to have the vehicle export out of the county.


Things to be aware of when buying a used car

  • Be suspicious of any deals that are "too good to be true".
  • Make the sure the title and registration match the name of the person selling the car.
  • Ensure the VIN (vehicle identification number) is secure on the dash.
  • Make sure the VIN on the dash matches the VIN on the title, registration sticker, and inspection.
  • Check the ignition for damage and tool marks (from being tampered with).
  • Be aware of a fresh paint job.  This may indicate an attempt to change the vehicle's identity.

Note: It does not matter who you are or what you do, if you buy a stolen car it will be confiscated and you will not be reimbursed for the money paid.  Do your research before making the purchase.

** information obtained from the Texas Automobile Theft Prevention Authority.