Auto thefts in Truckee, South Lake Tahoe and Reno are down by more than half over the past decade. But that may be changing.
Federal crime statistics show the number cars stolen from 2000 to 2011 in the region has dropped from 1,700 to just 650 -- down from the peak by more than half in every jurisdiction.
Departments credit tracking technology, use of bait cars and reality television shows that send the message that car thieves will likely be caught.
South Lake Tahoe Police Chief Brian Uhler said the decline raises another question.
“I guess the question really seems to be more of what other kinds of crimes are people who are likely to do this go do instead," said Uhler. "So, I don’t know if it is they are switching gears maybe they are switching to identity theft and other kinds of technology kinds of crimes that we are seeing a huge increase in.”
Uhler notes he has seen an uptick in auto thefts in the last couple of years. In fact a recent report from the Public Policy Institute of California says auto thefts around California jumped 14 percent as a result of a state re-alignment program to reduce the prison population.