Don’t let car thieves steal your holiday cheer

Bait car shows Kelowna thief prefers to steal stuff from car rather than steal the car.

A 53-year-old Kelowna man was sentenced to 42 days of incarceration after pleading guilty to stealing a cell phone from inside a bait vehicle last month.

On Nov. 25, the Kelowna RCMP received multiple bait vehicle activations throughout the day from the same vehicle but it never went mobile.

After reviewing the video retrieved from the bait vehicle, a 53 year old Kelowna man, known to police, was observed taking a cell phone from within the passenger compartment.

Later that month, Angelo Tumato was arrested and charged with theft under $5,000. Tumato pleaded guilty to the offence and was sentenced to the 42-day term of imprisonment.

The Bait Car Program is just one of the many tools the Kelowna RCMP uses in its Crime Reduction Strategy, targeting prolific offenders who tend to be responsible for the majority of crime.

Although theft occurs year-round, it is the Christmas shopping season and thefts from vehicle are expected to rise. Take added precautions such as:

•Always lock your vehicle

• Do not leave valuables inside your vehicle

• If you must leave something inside, place it in the trunk and out of view

• Park in well lit areas when shopping at night

• Plan your shopping trip to pick up the largest items last.

This will allow you to keep the smaller items out of view while purchasing that last big item.

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