MARSHALL, Texas (KETK) – The Marshall Police Department shared some safety tips with residents after seven vehicles were stolen Wednesday night.

The National Insurance Crime Bureau said car thefts are rising in the United States.

This crime can happen if a key is left in a car. Thieves are usually also looking for items they can sell inside the car or attempt to take parts of the car.

Here are some tips to avoid car theft:

  • Take your vehicle’s keys; do not leave keys in or on your vehicle. Thieves know that old trick of leaving keys on top of the tire. They will find them!
  • Close windows and lock all doors when you park.
  • If possible, park in a well-lit area.
  • Never leave valuables in your vehicle, especially if they can be seen from outside the vehicle. In fact, any item left in plain view may be an invitation to a thief. Do not leave unattended firearms in your car, even if they are hidden from view.
  • Install an audible alarm system and anti-theft devices. Visible devices, such as a steering wheel lock, window etching or a flashing alarm light may be enough to deter a car thief. They will move on to a car without such devices.
  • Install a vehicle immobilizer so your car cannot be “hotwired.”
  • Install a tracking system. These devices use electronic transmission technology that help law enforcement reveal the location of the stolen vehicle.
  • Call the police if you see someone looking into cars or acting suspiciously. Please be prepared to give the location, vehicle and any details you can observe.
  • If your car is stolen, please contact the police immediately. Locate your vehicle’s pertinent information, including its VIN, license plate number and details of the make, model, color and notable features. After you file the report, call your insurance provider.

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