TX H.E.A.T. Program - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

TX H.E.A.T. Program

Cpl. Jerry Neufeld says  a majority of stolen cars are recovered, but most have taken a beating Cpl. Jerry Neufeld says a majority of stolen cars are recovered, but most have taken a beating
"People are leaving the keys in the ignition while they run into the convenience store or the day care, something like that," says Neufeld "People are leaving the keys in the ignition while they run into the convenience store or the day care, something like that," says Neufeld

An average of three cars are stolen every day in Amarillo, a new statewide program is zeroing in on catching car thieves. But police say the program won't work until the public gets involved and breaks bad habits. 

The help end auto theft, or heat program is now being introduced to amarillo, in hopes of catching crooks on the job, from 1 to 5 in the morning.

The program works on a system of stickers posted on registered cars that allows police to stop and search the vehicle at the peak theft times.

But Amarillo police we spoke with say while the wee hours of the morning see a lot of action, a good majority of cars are stolen in the middle of the day due to driver negligence.

"We work hundreds of auto thefts a year, that people are leaving the keys in the ignition while they run into the convenience store or the day care, something like that," Cpl. Jerry Neufeld said.

Neufeld says a majority of stolen cars are recovered, but most have taken a beating, "I would say probably 60% to 75% of them are recovered within 3 to 5 maybe 7 days of them being stolen, they dump them somewhere, left them in a fiend, set them on fire, or whatever"

Last year more than one thousand cars where stolen off Amarillo streets. A number already on track to be surpassed this year, since the APD is already reporting 723 thefts since January.

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