AURORA, Colo. — Police know they are out there, you think they’re out there, but if there is an auto thief in the area, your unattended car with keys in the ignition is a perfect target of Grand Theft Auto.
“We know these ‘puffer cars’ are prime targets for the bad guys,” said Officer Ken Forrest. “It is illegal to leave your keys in the car while it’s warming/running, but you can leave it unattended if you have installed a remote starter for the vehicle.”
Within a few minutes, on this chilly Tuesday morning, police located more than a dozen cars puffing in driveways and at the curb.
Officer Forrest would simply peak inside the car to see if anyone was inside, and then knock on the door to notify the owner they were in violation of the law.
Most of the encounters were painless for owners, but one woman kicked one of the officers on patrol and one man showed his Concealed Carry Permit saying, “I was sitting right there in the window hoping someone would approach my car!”
In all, the officer we were paired up with made about 10 stops, issuing one ticket to the man with the CCP for being unreceptive to the warning.
The woman who kicked at the other officer on patrol was arrested, all for police trying to keep her car safe and from becoming a car theft victim.
Police made a point of telling motorists how easy they were making it for criminals to get keys and other glove box information by leaving keys in the ignition and sometimes doors unlocked.
Most understood and thanked police for the advice about ending the “puffing” during cold snaps.