Pasco Police say the number of car thefts has spiked this month, and they are also urging the public to do what they can to help prevent it.

Many of these include Hyundai and Kia models

The Pasco PD reports some surprising statistics, as of January 16th, they have taken 26 stolen vehicle reports, 7 of them reported January 2nd alone (2 were attempts).

Police say 30 have been stolen in the last 30 days, that's the highest number since 2022.  Many of the models taken reflect the national epidemic regarding certain Kia and Hyundai models. These are the ones that can be easily hotwired using a USB cable. Videos of how to do it were posted worldwide as part of a Tik-Tok social media challenge.

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Pasco PD says if you own one of these models, contact your dealer about updates and fixes being provided to owners to correct the issue. According to Pasco PD:

"Pasco also recovered an additional 3 stolen vehicles from other agencies on this day. Many of these stolen vehicles are also being used as getaway cars for additional crimes, with vehicle prowls rising 69% from November to December of 2023 (from 35 to 59)."

They say to make sure your vehicle is locked, don't leave any valuables in sight, and if possible, install and anti-theft system on the vehicle.

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