Several Steamboat Springs residents report items stolen from their vehicles

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The Steamboat Springs Police Department has responded to five reports of Steamboat residents claiming items were stolen from their vehicles, including one resident reporting their vehicle was stolen from their property on Bear Drive. Officers later found the vehicle in another part of town.

Steamboat Springs Police Chief Cory Christensen said all residents who reported they had items stolen left the vehicles unlocked, which Christensen said many people do because the city is considered to be very safe.

“This is a crime of opportunity,” Christensen said. “These thieves will try your cars, and if your car is unlocked, they’ll enter the car and see what they can steal. So the best way to beat this is to lock your cars.”

Most of the reported thefts occurred in the same neighborhood, and Sgt. Rich Brown said officers believe it is likely the same person or group of people who are responsible.

“This town is very safe, but these are crimes of opportunity, so if someone has an opportunity to get into an unlocked vehicle, they will,” Brown said.

Brown said a potential thief is much less likely to break a window or forcefully enter a vehicle, which is why it’s imperative to keep vehicles locked.

“If someone goes through a parking lot and pulls on door handles, they pass by the ones that are locked and find ones that are unlocked,” Brown said.

Christensen also said such incidents tend to increase as the weather gets warmer, because people likely to steal items from a car are walking around at night more often when weather is warmer, and vehicles are less likely to have doors that are frozen shut.

Stealing items from a vehicle is considered first-degree criminal trespassing, a felony.

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