Calgary police has taken dramatic action and has released a montage of helicopter angled videos showing car thieves in action to expose the dramatic increase in vehicle thefts over the past year. The video showed vehicles running red lights, nearly hitting pedestrians and police alike and causing accidents on major highways and plowing through fences in an attempt to avoid arrest from the police. Calgarian police reported there were 4879 vehicle thefts reported in 2016, a staggering 51 per cent increase from the average reported over the past five years. The increasing amount of reports of such crimes and the dangerous conduct of the thieves has the police asking the public to make it harder for thieves to steal their vehicles. "They're not rational and you can see that by the type of driving these vehicles are being driven. It's become very frustrating for us," said Inspector Mike Bossley.
A month of awareness campaign to discourage motorists from leaving their vehicles unattended and running, the problem continues to persist as 14 instances of that crime occurring on Jan 11th alone. For people unaware of Calgary, during the winter months the temperature is as low as -30 C and it is common for people to start their car as they get ready so they are not in an ice box during their commute to work. One in four stolen vehicles are taken with the keys inside while they're being warmed up. The thefts over just the past year has led to the death of an innocent driver as well as at least four cases of police shootings, and two suspects dying. The president of Calgary's police union says the number of incidents are forcing their members into increasingly dangerous situations where use of force is required. "We are answering more calls where those decisions have to be made," said Les Kasminski, the union's president.
He also recommended the force should re-assign more resources into reducing vehicle thefts that lead to many officer-involved shootings. One of the approaches is to remove chronic offenders off the street. Even if the stolen vehicle is spotted on the road, Calgary has a no pursuit public safety policy. The police will only pursue the vehicle if there is an immediate need to identify the driver or the vehicles or stop the driver from harming the public that outweighs the risk to public safety from the chase. So unless the car thief has stolen the vehicle and has decided to drive like the thieves in the video, most likely chance are the police will not chase them out of fear for what happens in the videos. Best way to prevent car theft - get a remote starter. Warm up your car without even leaving your keys in the vehicles and without the key, as soon as the brake pedal is stepped on, the engine will shut off.