ASHEBORO N.C. – Last month the Randolph County Sheriff’s Office investigated eight vehicle thefts, which makes up almost half of the vehicle thefts reported in 2023 and data is already showing a spike in theft related calls this month.
The crime dashboard maintained on the Sheriff’s Office website shows that so far this year 18 motor vehicle thefts have been or are being investigated, eight of those occurred in March.
To avoid being the victim of a vehicle theft the Sheriff’s Office recommends the following advice:
- Lock your doors every time you leave your vehicle and take your keys. Many vehicles that are burglarized have been vehicles that were unlocked and those that were stolen had keys in them. Do not leave a spare key inside the vehicle.
- Do not leave your car running unattended even for a minute; criminals are opportunists who love an easy job.
- Car alarms are a deterrent. Yes, they are loud and annoying, but next time this happens, take notice that there are no car thieves around that noisy car. If you hear an alarm, check it out immediately.
- Do not park your vehicle in an isolated area or an area where others cannot see your vehicle from the street. Park in a well-lit area if possible; turn on the lights around your driveway or parking area.
- If you park in your garage, make sure you lock your garage door. If you are gone for a while, do not leave your garage door opener inside your vehicle, that gives them access not only to your vehicle but also probably to the entire residence.
- Dial 911 when you see anyone or anything suspicious in the area. Deputies will gladly respond to suspicious condition calls. It is always better to be safe rather than sorry.
Overall, property crimes in March were up slightly with 110 reported, up from 102 the month prior. April is already off to a concerning start with a spike seen in burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft and robbery calls in just the last few days.
That spike isn’t completely unexpected, according to the FBI, property crimes increase about 10 percent when the weather is warm with July and August being peak season for thieves.
We will continue to monitor crime trends to see if this most recent spike is a fluke or the start of a crime trend in the county.
To read more about arrests in vehicle theft cases in March check out this article.