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News from The Colorado State Patrol & The Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority Contacts: Captain Kris Meredith/CSP: 303.239.4574, Tom Boyle/CATPA: 303.890.6507 COLORADO KICKOFFS MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT AWARENESS MONTH DENVER, CO (March 2, 2005) – Every 25 seconds a motor vehicle is stolen in America and more than 98,570 vehicles have been reported stolen in Colorado between 1999 and 2004, Lt. Governor Jane Norton announced today. Lt. Governor Jane Norton kicked off Colorado Motor Vehicle Theft Awareness Month today as she read Governor Owens’ Proclamation in support of auto theft prevention programs being conducted in the state. “Colorado ranked 12th in the nation in 2004 for stolen vehicles per capita,” said Lt. Governor Norton. “Last year, the Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority (CATPA), was created as a cooperative program between state government, law enforcement, the insurance industry and other stakeholders, to reduce motor vehicle theft in Colorado. “CATPA has been formed within the Colorado Department of Public Safety (CDPS) and provides progress reports to the general assembly,” said Lt. Governor Norton. “The Colorado State Patrol (CSP) administers the CATPA grant program within the CDPS. CATPA’s role is to assist in implementing programs to curtail organized crime activities with respect to vehicle theft, raise awareness of the extent and impact of motor vehicle theft – organized or otherwise, and promote theft prevention activities, as well as assist in the attack on insurance fraud activities -- staged accidents, owner give-ups and other such insurance fraud. Colonel Mark Trostel, Chief of the CSP pointed out that one such CATPA activity is the Colorado Watch Your Car program – which is a FREE voluntary auto theft prevention program. “Colorado’s law enforcement is working hard to prevent auto theft across the state,” said Colonel Trostel. “A vehicle’s parts are often worth two to three times the value of the vehicle. “The Watch Your Car program encourages motor vehicle owners to voluntarily display a decal on their vehicles to alert police that their vehicles are not normally driven between the hours of 1 A.M. and 5 A.M,” said Colonel Trostel. “The decal authorizes law enforcement to stop those vehicles between those hours on the assumption that their vehicles may have been stolen. For more information on Watch Your Car and other programs, vehicle owners can go to www.coloradoautotheft.org.” The Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association points out that auto thieves are stealing from all drivers, because Coloradoans foot the bill through their insurance rates. 26% of comprehensive auto insurance premiums pay for auto theft claims and that premium is on the rise, increasing nearly 10% from 1998 to 2002. In 2003, the value of stolen motor vehicles nationally was $8 billion. The following is a list of the 2005 CATPA grant programs being sponsored by State Farm, Progressive and Country Insurance companies. The funds are used to provide personal services, investigative operations, training and equipment. Regional Auto Theft Team of Northern Colorado (R.A.T.T.) -- CSP Captain Robert Parrish supervises the $138,400 grant. R.A.T.T. will target auto theft in Northern Colorado, particularly the Fort Collins, Greeley, Longmont and Loveland areas. The Denver Metro Auto Theft Team (D.M.A.T.T.) -- This grant for $300,000 involves numerous law enforcement agencies in the Denver metro area. The D.M.A.T.T. is administered by CSP Major Rick Salas. The Regional Auto Theft Team -- The Colorado Springs R.A.T.T. received a grant of $71,502. and is supervised by Sgt. Denis Dugan of the Colorado Springs PD. The “Team” involves multiple jurisdictions in the Colorado Springs area. The Watch Your Car Program – The CSP supervises the Watch Your Car program with a grant of $6,795, which also includes funding for advertising to launch the Denver metro area activities with approximately 15 area law enforcement agencies at local grocery stores. The “club,” an auto theft prevention steering wheel devise, will be given out on a first come/first served basis to individuals who enroll in the FREE Watch Your Car program. (A copy of the ad listing the Denver area locations is attached to this release.) The Colorado Auto Theft Investigators (CATI) -- A grant of $10,000 was provided to CATI to recruit trainers and provide scholarships to state law enforcement agencies to attend the Colorado Auto Theft Investigators training conference. ###CSP-1st In Traffic Safety### Auto Theft Prevention Background Information How to Prevent Auto Theft: The cheapest form of defense is to simply employ the anti-theft devices that are standard on all vehicles: locks. Lock your car and take your keys. Enroll in the “Watch Your Car” program. The Watch Your Car program encourages motor vehicle owners to voluntarily display a decal on their vehicles to alert police that their vehicles are not normally driven between the hours of 1 A.M. and 5 A.M. The decal authorizes law enforcement to stop those vehicles between those hours on the assumption that their vehicles may have been stolen. For more information on Watch Your Car and other programs, vehicle owners can go to www.coloradoautotheft.org. Having and using a visible or audible warning device is another item that can ensure that your car remains where you left it. “Kill” switches, fuel cut-offs, and smart keys are among the devices which are high and low tech, but extremely effective. Generally speaking, if your car won’t start, it won’t get stolen. On the higher end of high tech are the newer devices which can alert you—and law enforcement—the moment an unauthorized user decides to take your wheels for a test drive. Using one of these items will ensure that the car thief has a warm reception from police when he—or she—decides to park. The 10 Most Stolen Vehicles in Colorado 1. 1994 Honda Accord 2. 2000 Honda Civic 3. 1993 Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee 4. 1998 Dodge Neon 5. 1992 Chevrolet Full Size C/K 1500 Pickup 6. 1995 Plymouth Neon 7. 1997 Ford F150 Series 8. 1991 Ford Explorer 9. 1996 Chevrolet Blazer 10. 1994 Acura Integra Honorary Proclamation MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT AWARENESS MONTH March 2005 WHERERAS, nearly 100,000 vehicles have been reported stolen in Colorado in the past five years; and WHEREAS, the percentage of vehicles stolen and not recovered is increasing, as is the percentage of vehicles stolen for parts stripping; and WHEREAS, the average value of a stolen motor vehicle is $7,100, which equaled more than $161 million in Colorado last year; and WHEREAS, auto theft prevention programs such as the Colorado Watch Your Car program are supported by a wide variety of public and private organizations including the Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority, State Farm, Progressive, and Country Insurance companies, the Colorado State Patrol, and numerous other law enforcement agencies across the state; and WHEREAS, through public education and law enforcement programs, motor vehicle thefts can be reduced; Now Therefore, I, Bill Owens, Governor of the State of Colorado, do hereby proclaim March 2005, MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT AWARENESS MONTH in the State of Colorado. Signed: Governor Bill Owens
"News from The Colorado State Patrol _ The Colorado Auto Theft "