Summer time, and the annual sunshine rush to the Vancouver Island wilderness is underway.
And hard on its heels comes the annual push by thieves to find plunder in the parked cars.
A recent rash of thefts from vehicles continues in Campbell River, according to police. Items are also getting ripped off from campsites.
Police say more than 80 per cent of recent cases involved vehicles that were unlocked.
“It’s our hope that if people get in the habit of checking their vehicle doors at night before going to bed that many of these crimes can be prevented in the future,” said Campbell River RCMP spokesperson Cst. Maury Tyre in a media release.
Thefts from vehicles are part of a recent spike in property crime locally
Cases of vehicle theft are resulting in credit card and cheque fraud as people leave their wallets and purses in vehicles. Due to the advent of the “tap” function on credit cards and online cheque cashing, many frauds occur before victims even know their cards or cheque books are missing.
“The Campbell River RCMP has made arrests and continues to investigate these property crimes, but it’s with the public’s assistance that we can significantly reduce this type of criminal activity,” Tyre said.
Police urged people to avoid leaving valuables like wallets and phones unattended in vehicles, or in “unlocked or easily-accessed outbuildings.”
Perhaps less obvious was their suggestion that people lock up belongings at campsites. That includes bikes, generators and trailers.
Police also said that if a deal seems “too good to be true, it probably is” and urged people not to buy stolen property, saying it supports criminal activity.