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Police respond to spike in auto thefts in Shelby Township

Posted at 11:25 PM, Jan 20, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-20 23:25:06-05

SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) — As they crack down on a wave of auto thefts, Shelby Township police are issuing an alert to drivers about locking the doors of their vehicles.

This comes after more than a dozen cars were stolen in the last month. Many of the incidents have been happening in the area of 22 Mile Road and Schoenherr Road.

In some cases, several vehicles were taken from the same driveway in the same night.

Driver Velda Young admitted she’s not always taken time to lock up.

“Car door, house door, any door,” Young said.

Police told 7 Action News some vehicles are found close by, while others are located in Detroit. Valuables are stolen from inside by the thieves who seem to be getting bolder.

“Police don’t play. I’m really surprised. I mean, you see police everywhere and that’s why I’m so comfortable. Our police are really great,” Young said.

We spoke with Shelby Township police officer Carrie Bennett about the matter, which police say involves vehicles parked in public lots as well.

“We’ve seen so many cars stolen and broken into. Their items are gone,” Bennett said.

Police say newer vehicles are often being targeted and in most cases, owners have left keys inside or even just a key fab you can start the engine with.

Bennett added, “They will find your laptops, valuables if you leave anything in the car. Most of the time, it’s overnight. So, we want people to lock up their cars overnight.”

We checked with michigan.gov to also look into cost of thefts. It’s estimated that each time a police officer is called in to work an eight-hour shift on a weekend for overtime, taxpayers are hit with an expense of $282.

“People are just hopping in and taking them. Or they are stealing cars from somewhere else then ditching them and stealing someone else’s car,” driver Samantha Bolling said.

Police haven’t said if any arrests have been made at this point. They’re urging the public to remain vigilant and report any info that could help.