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Police To Crack Down Even More On Auto Thefts

DENVER (CBS4) - On average more than 12,000 cars are stolen in Colorado every year. That translates into more than $79 million in losses. That's about half of what it used to be years ago since task forces statewide were put in place, but police are cracking down even more.

Police want to add more license plate scanners to patrol cars. They constantly scan plates as police drive around, notifying them if a plate comes up as stolen.

Police are also using LoJack scanners. LoJack is a device that's hidden in some cars.  When the car is stolen it transmits a signal which police can detect if they pass a car that has been stolen.

Recent polls show that about 40 percent of Coloradans know someone who has had their car stolen, but only 8 percent are worried about it happening to them. Forty percent also admit to leaving their car running unattended, which is illegal in Colorado.

"Did you think about, 'Maybe I'm going to go out into the parking lot and my car is simply not going to be there anymore?' What was in your car? Maybe there were clues to your identity, maybe a purse, a wallet, maybe your garage door opener. Now whoever took your car knows where you live," Carole Walker with the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association said.

Gov. John Hickenlooper has proclaimed this week "Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Week."

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