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Photo of a police badge

PUBLIC RELATIONS UNIT

DECEMBER 19, 2023

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact Information: PolicePRUnit@slcgov.com

Media Request Form: https://slcpd.com/mediarequest/

SLCPD Warns Community of Potential Car Thefts, Conduct Education Mission

 

SALT LAKE CITY — The Salt Lake City Police Department is reminding community members about the dangers of leaving cars running unattended.

This morning, December 19, 2023, officers with the Salt Lake City Police Department’s Pioneer Precinct and members of the Department’s Police Community Response Team (PCRT) visited neighborhoods in Glendale and Rose Park looking for vehicles left running unattended.

No citations or warnings were issued, instead the Department focused on education.

Officers and PCRT specialists placed a card explaining the importance of staying with your car while its running.

On average, about 1,700 cars are stolen each year in Salt Lake City. Many of those cars are stolen while left unattended warming up in driveways or parking lots.

Car thefts are often a crime of opportunity.

During the 90-minute operation, Salt Lake City Police found 136 vehicles running unattended.

Salt Lake City Code and Utah State law prohibit leaving cars running unattended.

If car owners choose to warm up their vehicles before driving, they should stay in their car. The remote start feature on cars is not guaranteed to prevent a car from being stolen. Even if the car is immobilized, the suspect may cause thousands of dollars in damage from breaking into the car.

The Salt Lake City Police Department’s Community Response Team (PCRT) is a program implemented by the department following a recommendation in 2021 for a non-sworn response program to assist with call diversion. PCRT specialists respond to low hazard, non-emergency calls for service. The pillars for the PCRT include:

1.         Support – support for public safety responders through call diversion and auxiliary functions.

2.         Service – providing additional support both internally and externally (lockouts, battery jumps, tire changes, etc.)

3.         Community Engagement – emphasis on meeting community members where they live and work. Several photos from today’s operation are being released. In addition, the Department is releasing a copy of the graphic used to educate community members.

Photo: Salt Lake City Police Captain Yvette Zayas speaks with a community member who had their vehicle running unattended (SLCPD photo, Dec. 19, 2023).

Photo: A Salt Lake City Police Department Community Response truck parked along North General Drive as part of an education mission conducted by the SLCPD (SLCPD Photo, December 19, 2023).

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