Police warn drivers not to leave their keys in their vehicles

Kelowna RCMP are reminding people to not leave their keys inside their vehicles because it makes it easier for thieves to take them.

Kelowna RCMP are reminding people to not leave their keys inside their vehicles because it makes it easier for thieves to take them.

The Kelowna RCMP’s Auto Theft Unit has reported that in the last 60 days, eight car thefts were reported where the vehicle owners had left either their primary or their spare set of keys inside the vehicle, with the vehicle unlocked, said Const. Steve Holmes.

The thieves were able to locate the keys and simply drive away.

“All of these vehicles had immobilizers that would have prevented the thefts if the culprits didn’t have the keys containing the vehicle’s remotes and micro chips,” Holmes added.

“Hiding a spare set of keys inside your car is not a good idea as looking for keys is usually the first thing a knowledgeable car thief does once inside your vehicle.”

A lot of cars have immobilizers that are activated once the doors are locked, police say.

So leaving your doors unlocked defeats the purpose of having an immobilizer, unless your ignition key has a proximity chip that deactivates an ignition cut out switch once the key is inserted into the ignition.

The Kelowna RCMP Auto Theft Unit is actively working to locate and arrest those responsible for auto theft in this community.

If anyone has any information in relation to any recent auto thefts, please call the Kelowna RCMP at 250-762-3300 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.