Alberta RCMP warns auto thieves: Don’t take the bait!

Together, the Alberta RCMP Auto Theft Unit and Rocky Mountain House RCMP detachment launched a bait vehicle campaign earlier this summer in an effort to apprehend priority offenders and tackle the community’s property crime rates. As a result of the enforcement initiative, officers have charged an individual with theft of a motor vehicle.

An Albertan male, 34, has been charged with the following:

One count of Theft of a Motor Vehicle under S.333.1 of the Criminal Code;
One count of Theft under $5,000 under S.334 of the Criminal Code; and
One count of Driving while Prohibited under S.320.18(1) of the Criminal Code.
This matter is still before the courts.

Between June 22 and July 20, 2021, an Alberta RCMP bait vehicle was positioned in different areas throughout Rocky Mountain House for a few days at a time. The car was placed in locations with frequent incidences of vehicle break-ins and thefts. Rocky Mountain House RCMP were alerted to the vehicle being targeted and taken on July 20. Minutes before police arrived to initiate a stop with the vehicle, the suspect parked and exited the car.

Bait vehicles are police GPS-monitored vehicles that are strategically placed with the intention of being stolen. Police are able to control bait vehicle functions remotely, including disabling the engines to make safe arrests. The Alberta RCMP reminds the public that any vehicle could be a bait vehicle. Steal one and the only ride you’ll be taking is in the back of a police car.

“As much as initiatives like these are used to apprehend priority offenders contributing to property crime, we also want them to serve as preventative measures. These cars are everywhere – offenders run the risk of being caught and apprehended every time they look to steal a vehicle. We hope this causes individuals to think twice before taking the bait.”

– Supt. Peter Tewfik, Officer in Charge of Crime Reduction Strategies, Alberta RCMP

To prevent yourself from becoming a victim of auto theft, remember the following tips:

Always lock your vehicle doors.
Never leave your vehicle running or with keys inside.
Remove valuables from your vehicle including wallets, purses, shopping bags, change, electronics, and sunglasses.
Remove garage door openers from your vehicle.
Park your vehicle in sight or in a well-lit area.
Use a steering wheel lock.
Lock your garage.
Disable power to your garage door if you’re leaving for an extended period of time.
For more crime prevention information, follow us on Facebook @RCMPinAlberta and on Twitter @RCMPAlberta.

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