Thursday, September 24, 2009

Police partner with auto parts store Saturday to reduce vehicle-related thefts

Police estimate that up to 60 percent of Kansas City thefts are related to vehicles, and they’re teaming up with a local business to put a stop to that.

Advance Auto Parts, in partnership with Kansas City Missouri Police, will sponsor an Automobile Crime Prevention Kick-Off event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 26, at the 4401 E. Truman Road location. Advance Auto Parts will offer anti-theft products at deeply discounted prices, and police will be on hand to provide crime prevention information. Free hot dogs and drinks also will be available. The discounts will be available only at that Advance Auto Parts location through Oct. 17.

“We believe with proper education and the availability of prevention devices, thefts related to vehicles can be reduced dramatically,” said Master Patrol Officer James Schriever of the Central Patrol Division.

One of the most common targets of thefts is license plate renewal tabs, M.P.O. Schriever said, comprising 30 to 40 percent of all stealing complaints. An easy way to prevent that theft is with a clear license plate cover. Advance Auto Parts at 4401 E. Truman Road will offer such a cover with a life-time guarantee against breaking for $3.99. Until about two years ago, plate covers were not legal in Missouri, but they were legalized at the same time the State passed a law that waived replacement fees for residents who had their license plate tabs stolen. Other anti-theft items that will be offered at heavily discounted prices through this police partnership include steering wheel locks, trailer hitch locks, gas cap locks, locking wheel lug nuts and motorcycle wheel locks. These discounts will be available from Sept. 26 to Oct. 17, only at the 4401 E. Truman Road Advance Auto Parts location.

M.P.O. Schriever also said there are free, common-sense things to do to prevent your vehicle from becoming burglarized. The most important is to not leave anything of value in view inside your vehicle.

“The other day, we had a guy who had to pay $400 to replace the window in his car because someone broke it to steal 35 cents out of his cup-holder,” M.P.O. Schriever said.

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