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Car-related thefts rise in Morinville

Town cops promote lock-it-or-lose-it campaign
stock rcmp
Morinville RCMP's fourth-quarter policing report showed a 16-per-cent increase in all offences from October to December 2021. FILE PHOTO/St. Albert Gazette

Morinville RCMP want residents to help stop a rash of car-related thefts in town by keeping their car doors locked.

Morinville council received its fourth-quarter policing report March 8.

The report showed a 250-per-cent increase in motor vehicle thefts from October to December compared to that same time in 2020, with seven thefts compared to two. Thefts under $5,000 rose 177 per cent to 36 thefts from 13. The report found a 16-per-cent rise in all offences last quarter compared to that same time in 2020.

In an interview, Morinville detachment commander Sgt. Chris Palfy said this upswing was due to a rash of thefts of and from vehicles last quarter. Officers are now distributing pamphlets and checking car doors as part of a lock-it-or-lose-it campaign to encourage residents to lock their doors and remove valuables from their vehicles.

The campaign appears to be working, Palfy said in his report to council. None of the thefts under $5,000 from vehicles in the detachment’s zone in November involved unlocked cars or easily removed items; one theft over $5,000 was of a bag of hockey equipment snatched from the box of a pickup truck. December saw 12 thefts from vehicles, nine of which were in Morinville and three of which involved unlocked vehicles. Six thefts were of licence plates or catalytic converters.

The police report can be found in the agenda package for the March 8 council meeting.

Kevin Ma

About the Author: Kevin Ma

Kevin Ma joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2006. He writes about Sturgeon County, education, the environment, agriculture, science and aboriginal affairs. He also contributes features, photographs and video.
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