Why you shouldn’t leave your car unattended to defrost

Published: Feb. 6, 2023 at 5:11 AM CST|Updated: Feb. 6, 2023 at 6:19 AM CST
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TEXARKANA, Texas (KSLA) - With these chilly mornings, many people will start their car early and head back inside to let it warm up. The Texarkana Texas Police Department says this leaves you susceptible to a crime of opportunity.

Leaving your car unattended gives thieves the chance to easily steal your vehicle. TTPD says this is a very common crime around this time of year.

They say it is a crime of opportunity.

In Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas, it’s actually illegal to leave your car running while you step away. However, it is legal in Louisiana.

”We have people that go through neighborhoods and stuff trying door handles, looking to see what they can get into the car and steal. If they get in there, they’re going to take whatever they can find, change or whatever. But if the keys are in there, most times they’re going to take the car as well,” said Shawn Vaughn, public information officer with TTPD.

Vaughn said you can protect your vehicle by locking your doors, hiding valuables, parking in well-lit areas and never leaving your keys unattended.

”Most of the time, by you just taking a few simple steps of locking your doors, taking your keys, hiding your stuff, you’re going to prevent somebody from breaking into your car. And, in some cases if the keys are in it, you’re going to prevent them from stealing it.”

The first thing you should do if your car is stolen is call 911.

Vaughn said their investigation process for a stolen vehicle doesn’t change if you left your keys in the car; but your insurance provider may think differently.