RCMP in southern Alberta are requesting public assistance in preventing and solving crimes due to a recent increase in stolen vehicles and thefts.
In recent weeks, Taber/Vauxhall RCMP have been responding to an increased number of stolen vehicles in and around Barnwell and the southern M.D. of Taber, according to a recent news release. Police say these thefts appear to be linked to similar thefts in neighbouring areas.
The suspects are believed to be working in pairs or teams. They identify a vehicle and, in short order, break into it; often stealing items in plain sight, and occasionally stealing the vehicle itself.
Targeted items tend to be tools, firearms, cash, licence plates and trailers. Many of the stolen goods are not easily traced and can be easily sold to unsuspecting buyers.
The Taber/Vauxhall RCMP, in collaboration with agencies within the RCMP, including; Coaldale, Picture Butte, Bow Island and Raymond Detachments as well as external partners at the Lethbridge Police and Taber Police Services have been actively investigating these thefts.
The RCMP would like anyone with information on the person(s) responsible for these crimes to contact their nearest RCMP Detachment or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).
The RCMP also ask that if members of the public observe suspicious vehicles or people, or if someone attempts to sell items you suspect are stolen, to call 9-1-1 when it is safe to do so.
Citizens can assist by making sure vehicles are locked and valuables are removed or out of sight. Police also remind the public to never keep spare keys or firearms stored in a vehicle or keep a vehicle running while unattended.