The Durango Police Department is warning of increasing vehicle thefts in town.
Vehicle thefts in Durango increased from 36 in 2019 to 54 in 2020. Eleven vehicles have been stolen so far in 2021.
“People living in small, close-knit communities such as Durango tend to think they are immune from crimes that plague big cities. That is not the case with property crime, particularly vehicle theft, which is skyrocketing in our community,” said Cmdr. Ray Shupe in a news release issued by DPD.
Shupe said nearly 100% of vehicle thefts in Durango could easily have been prevented by the property owner.
Durango Police officers and detectives track down most stolen vehicles, but investigations can be time-consuming and complicated, Shupe said.
“Even the best police work cannot undo damage and the sense of loss associated with having your property stolen,” he said. “Theft often affects a person’s sense of security and can cause secondary loss in the form of higher insurance costs or reduction in coverage.”
Shupe said education is key to prevent most vehicle thefts.
DPD recommends vehicle owners take these steps to minimize the chance their cars will be stolen:
Park in safe, well-lit areas.Do not keep valuables in your vehicle, and if you must, hide them from view.Lock your car and close the windows.Keep all vehicle keys with you or secure in your home.Secure firearms so they cannot be stolen or accessed by unauthorized people.Do not leave your vehicle running unattended. It is risky and may be illegal.Report suspicious activity quickly by calling 911 for emergencies or 385-2900 for nonemergencies.DPD will undertake an informational campaign to lower property crimes in Durango by encouraging community members to take these prevention steps.
DPD officers will carry the message to residents: If officers find your car or property vulnerable, they will tell you about it.
“Lowering vehicle and property theft cannot happen without the community’s awareness and support,” Shupe said.