Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, along with many other agencies state-wide, will be out in force trying raise awareness about auto theft as well as attempting to prevent the crime from occurring.
Coloradans Against Auto Theft (CAAT), in collaboration with Colorado Auto Theft Investigators (CATI), announces the return of “Puffer Week,” the annual statewide awareness and enforcement campaign warning against the dangers of leaving cars running unattended. From Sunday, January 26 to Saturday, February 1, law enforcement and community partners will team up to encourage Coloradans to protect themselves from auto theft. While auto theft can happen anywhere, any time, they typically spike in the winter when drivers are more likely to leave their cars running unattended to warm up
“Puffing” -or leaving your car running unattended-is illegal in Colorado with one exception. Colorado law does exempt vehicles with a remote-start from being ticketed if found running unattended. However, drivers must keep the keyless start fob far enough away from the car that the vehicle can’t be moved.
During this week, there will be an increase in warnings and likely citations to those found with their cars running unattended. The first offense costs $60. Awareness and compliance are the keys that will help prevent the criminals from stealing cars. Auto theft contributes to the rise in Colorado’s crime rate and puts citizens at risk. Stolen cars are frequently used for armed robbery, identity theft, home invasion and drug offenses. All this is not worth leaving your car running, just to warm it up.
“While Douglas County is an extremely safe place to live and work, we have seen an increase in auto thefts, which we are working very hard to combat. We need the citizen’s help in this campaign. Don’t leave your car running unattended and certainly do not leave valuables inside,” stated Sheriff Tony Spurlock.
For more information about auto theft in Colorado, visit www.lockdownyourcar.org.