December 5, 2022

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automotive

Car Thefts on the Rise in 2022 in Some States

Boonchai WedmakawandGetty Images

  • Nationwide data isn’t available yet for 2022, but law enforcement agencies report vehicle thefts are up 88 percent in Washington and 31 percent in New Jersey.
  • The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) reports that full-size trucks from Ford and Chevy were the most stolen vehicles in 2020.
  • The Honda Accord and Civic took the next two spots, per NICB.

    Car thefts are way up in some parts of the country. In Washington state, for example, local law enforcement reported that vehicle thefts are up 88 percent in the first three months of 2022 compared to 2021: 12,569 so far this year compared to just 6,692 in the first three months of the last year. Over in New Jersey, thefts are up 31 percent. Other areas of the country are reporting similar statistics.

    The increases are part of a years-long trend, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), which notes that nationwide car thefts were up 16.5 percent in 2021 relative to 2019 figures (though that falls to an approximately 5 percent increase in thefts relative to 2020 figures, per our calculations). David Glawe, the president and chief executive officer of NICB, testified in front of the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary about the increased thefts, as well as a rise in carjackings, earlier this year. During his testimony, Glawe recommended the Committee find a way to collect national data on carjackings, as there currently is not a single definition of that act used by law enforcement agencies across the country.

    Bill PuglianoGetty Images

    NICB last released its statistics for the vehicles most likely to be stolen in the U.S. back in October of 2021, revealing full-size trucks from Ford and Chevrolet were the most stolen vehicles in 2020. The Honda Accord and Civic were the next most stolen vehicles on the list. The organization recommended four main ways to prevent vehicles from getting stolen (or at least make it easier to recover): use common sense (i.e., don’t leave your keys in the ignition), use a warning device, install an immobilizing device, and install a tracking device.

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