NORFOLK, Va. - Car thefts are on the rise as temperatures drop, according to the Norfolk Police Department.
Between 2020 and 2021, stolen vehicles increased by 33 percent. In 2021, 1,068 cars were reported stolen.
Police said often people are warming up their cars, leaving them running and unattended, making for an easy target.
Daniel Colon had his car stolen in December of 2021. He said he goes to work early, and always warms up his car. One Sunday morning, he came back outside to find it was gone.
“It wasn’t even 15 minutes and the car was gone. It’s like somebody was actually watching,” Colon said.
Police said more often than not, stolen vehicles are used in other crimes like robberies or shootings. A few blocks away from where Colon's car was stolen, Hernan Hernandez's roommate's car was also taken.
“It happened so fast. In 10 minutes, he came inside and nobody was around, and then it was gone,” Hernandez said.
Norfolk Police want to remind people to lock their cars and to never leave them running unattended.