Police see increase in car thefts as temperatures drop

DAYTON — Police departments across the Miami Valley have reports of stolen cars. Many of those cars were left running outside to heat up because of how cold it is.

While it may be tempting to leave your car running to heat up during the cold, Dayton police are reminding drivers that its actually illegal to have your car running and unaccompanied.

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In Dayton, police said they have seen an uptick in cars being stolen while they were left warming up.

“It takes only a second for someone to come through the neighborhood, through the business and just jump in your car,” Sgt. Gordon Cairns, Dayton Police Traffic Services Supervisor said. “A lot of the times they might not even be on foot. They could be dropped off by somebody else and get in your car and go.”

If you car is stolen, Cairns said there is also a chance of it becoming an even bigger headache, especially if the car is used in a crime.

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“Obviously, when these vehicles are stolen and they commit a crime, now you basically put yourself in the middle of a crime you really had nothing to do with,” Cairns said.

Cairns said one way to keep from enticing someone into stealing your car would be to keep things from being visible in your car.

Police recommend planning ahead and having an ice scraper in your car. Even if it means sitting in your car for 10 minutes to warm it up, police say that is better than having your car stolen.