ST. LOUIS—Police here are urging vehicle owners to prevent vehicle theft after what authorities say is a spike in thefts connected to two brands in particular.
Since January 1, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department reports 155 stolen Kia vehicles and 142 stolen Hyundai vehicles. That’s compared to 61 Kia thefts and 64 Hyundai thefts during the same time frame in 2021, according to a department news release Thursday. The data released Thursday did not break down the number of thefts involving unlocked vehicles, and a department spokesperson told Spectrum News said they would have to review each report to find that information.
According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, Missouri had an auto theft rate of 453.63 per 100,000 residents in 2020, putting the state fourth overall. Neither vehicle brand cracked the 2020 list of the top 10 for car vehicle thefts in the state in 2020 or 2021, according to NICB data. Last year, the Hyundai Sonata and the Hyundai Elantra came in at 19th and 20th place overall in the state.
Police are encouraging vehicle owners to use “car clubs” to deter theft. The devices are available at a reduced cost for city residents.