Kamloops police say auto theft down thanks to work of new unit

Police target auto thieves

Kamloops Mounties say weekly auto theft numbers have dropped after a new policing unit, which focuses on prolific offenders, completed a project targeting auto thieves.

In a quarterly report prepared for city council’s committee of the whole meeting on Tuesday, Kamloops RCMP said the crime reduction unit, which was launched last fall, has a mandate to be proactive with offender management and “enhance accountability of repeat offenders through the judiciary process.”

According to police, the unit has its eye on 16 designated prolific offenders, with eight of these people currently in custody in part due to the auto theft project.

Mounties said the project, which was completed with the help of a provincial auto crime team, targeted six of the most active vehicle thieves, four of whom were designated prolific offenders.

“The result was charges being laid against all six targets, five of the six are currently in custody and weekly auto theft numbers have dropped from a high of 25 to as low as three on some weeks,” the report said.

“Regardless, auto theft is a constant challenge and the CRU continues to work hard at addressing it.”

The report noted in addition to targeted projects, the unit also executed eight arrest warrants and 102 curfew checks during the first quarter of 2023.

According to Kamloops RCMP, the unit is also looking to boost its staffing compliment by one new constable.

According to the report, the crime reduction unit has “progressed from one corporal and four constables to an additional constable this fiscal year.”

“All positions are filled, with the new constable position being advertised internally with a selection pending,” Kamloops RCMP said in the report.

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