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Thefts from Vehicles Cannot be Prevented Alone - We Need Your Help!

On-Going Public Awareness Campaign and Call to Action to Residents, Businesses and Visitors

Post Date:03/11/2019 3:15 PM

Throughout the state, law enforcement agencies are battling high occurrences of thefts from vehicles. Santa Clara is no different!

The Santa Clara Police Department (SCPD) takes proactive steps to address preventing thefts from vehicles among residents, business / property owners and visitors, including: 

  • Educational messages on the City/SCPD website and social media
  • Community meetings
  • Flyer distribution in targeted areas encouraging drivers not to leave valuables in their vehicle
  • Meetings with hotel management, car rental companies and shopping center property managers to encourage ample lighting, security personnel, signage and video surveillance
  • High visibility patrols in areas where break-ins have occurred 
  • Undercover operations in an attempt to locate in-progress thefts from vehicles

Despite these efforts, from January 1-March 10, 2019, 748 thefts from vehicles have occurred in the City of Santa Clara. This is a 125.3% increase over the same timeframe in 2018. The top two locations for these types of occurrences are parking lots of retail establishments and in front of residences.

In recent weeks, SCPD interrupted two in-progress thefts from vehicles. In both cases, the suspects crashed into police and/or civilian vehicle(s) and additional property was damaged while evading arrest. While one person was apprehended, the remaining suspects remain at large. Fortunately, in both cases, nobody was injured, however these incidences are a good reminder for the public to contact police as opposed to trying to approach these violent criminals.

SCPD needs your help - prevention begins with YOU! Most thefts from vehicles are crimes of opportunity – and, are easily preventable.

  • Criminals “window shop.” If a criminal doesn’t see anything, they are less likely to break into your vehicle
  • Do not leave items in plain sight - loose change, cell phone, GPS, gym bag, purse/wallet, charging cords, garage remote, sunglasses - NOTHING!
  • Do not leave cell phones, iPads or laptops in your vehicle. Thieves have been known to locate signals from these devices even if the device is in "sleep mode"
  • Lock your vehicle
  • Report suspicious activity by calling (408)615-5580. In-progress incidents should be reported by calling 9-1-1

If you are a victim of a theft from a vehicle, there are three ways to file a police report:

  • Online at
  • In person at the Police Building, 601 El Camino Real, during normal business hours (Monday-Friday, 8:00am-6:00pm; Saturday, 9:00am-3:00pm; Closed Sunday)
  • Call (408)615-5580 for police officer response (as call volume allows)

Take these proactive steps to reduce your risk of becoming a victim and decrease crime in our community.

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