Owasso Car Theft Spike Drops After Police Patrols Increase
OWASSO, Oklahoma - Dozens of cars were stolen right out of the driveway in Owasso neighborhoods.
Police call it going shopping.
Criminals go into a neighborhood looking for what they can find in a car.
They'll grab anything that they can take out and in some cases, they'll just take the car, too.
"Even if it's parked right out front. You think you're fine while you're sleeping. It could be gone just like that when you wake up the next morning," said victim Justin Culver.
Culver woke up Monday morning to an alarming surprise.
"I was going to go to the gym. It was about 7 in the morning. I walk out and my truck's gone," he said.
Thieves had taken off with his 1984 Silverado, a truck he says he's worked so hard for.
"It's like my baby," he said.
It wasn't long before Justin took action. He posted to Facebook, alerting people to be on the lookout.
"My girlfriend became the keyboard warrior and got on there and she networked so much and she found out that there were a lot of other people in the area that have had their vehicles stolen," Culver said.
Owasso Police said Justin isn't alone. There were 10 auto thefts in September.
That number spiked to 15 in October. Since then, police have placed more patrols on the streets bringing the number down to 5 for the month of November.
“When we had the big month of a bunch of cars being stolen, the efforts … of the night shifts to really going out and patrol the neighborhoods has really kept it at bay. So, we're hoping that added increase in patrol and officer awareness will help keep these thieves out of here," said Lieutenant Nick Boatman, Owasso Police.
Lt. Boatman also said using social media to find your vehicle is a great tool, but remember to use caution.
"If a victim wants to continue looking for their vehicle that's fine and great just be careful to what you take into your own hands," Boatman said.
"Everyone that's had their vehicle stolen feel like we need to do what we can to least get out there and look for these things instead of sitting around hoping,” said Culver.
And while you're out shopping, police warn putting things into the back of your trunk.
They said it does not stop thieves from taking what they want.