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Car Thefts Jump at New Years

JOPLIN, MO.-- New Year's is known for the ball dropping at midnight, resolutions - and car thefts.
JOPLIN, MO.-- New Year's is known for the ball dropping at midnight, resolutions - and car thefts.

"Do not leave items in the car that you normally wouldn't leave in the car. They see items, these gifts sitting in a car, so they think this is time to break in," said Kyle Hickam, State Farm Insurance Agent.

The National Insurance Crime Bureau said more than 2,200 cars nationwide were reported stolen on New Year's in 2012, the most of any holiday that year.

"What people need to keep in mind is that there is so much going on this time of year, that people tend to get out of their routine of doing normal things," said Hickam.

It is also good to keep in mind that your insurance may not cover car theft.

"If you do not have comprehensive coverage on your loss, then typically a theft loss or a vandalism loss may not be covered by your insurance policy," said said Lt. Mark Steward, Joplin Police Department.

Two things to remember when leaving your car unattended, grab your keys and always lock your doors.

"It's always good to take those few extra steps, it will save you a lot of time and a lot of hassle in the long run," said Lt. Steward. 

Experts say leaving your car in well lit areas and where people can see it can make a big difference.

"Those would be the biggest items. I think you would deter a lot of things, a lot of reasons thieves would have to break into your car. If they don't see those things, their probably going to walk on to the next car," said Hickam.

Be aware of your car tonight as well, New Year's Eve had the third most car thefts in 2012.



(story by KODE, Joplin)
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