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Break and enter, theft from motor vehicle reports down year-over-year

There were both ups and downs in property crime reports in Grande Prairie last month.

Break and enter reports dropped sharply year over year with 12 reports in 2023, down from 19 just a year ago. Data released by the Grande Prairie RCMP shows a similar downward trend in theft from a motor vehicle incidents, with just 10 reports in January 2023, down from 12 in 2022.

However, it’s not all positive trends, as both theft of a motor vehicle and possession of stolen property reports have gone up in the municipality. Stolen property reports have climbed to 12 from 10 year over year, while motor vehicle theft calls have bumped to 26 from 23.

Sergeant Shawn Graham says while they continue to actively patrol to prevent property theft crimes from happening, residents can also use proactive measures to try and shield themselves from becoming a victim. He says things like leaving no valuables in your vehicle, and parking in well-lit areas can deter would-be thieves from targeting you.

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“Not leaving your vehicle running, if you have to, use a remote starter for your car to warm up. It really doesn’t take that long for someone to steal a vehicle, especially if you’re leaving the keys in it,” Graham says.

“Taking those few easy steps will make stealing the vehicle more difficult, and often prevents it from happening.”

Graham says vehicles being left running while empty continues to be an issue in the municipality. He adds police initiatives, like the recent annual safety blitz, Operation Cold Start, is enough to remind drivers of the potential risk that comes with leaving their vehicle running unattended.

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