South Bend Police investigating uptick in Kia vehicle thefts

SBPD issued similar crime alert five months ago
Published: Dec. 13, 2022 at 11:32 AM EST
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - The South Bend Police Department is investigating another uptick in thefts of Kia vehicles that officials say is likely motivated by posts continuing to circulate on social media.

Back in late July, police issued a crime alert/PSA about Kia and Hyundai vehicles being targeted in thefts across South Bend. This came as a video is making its rounds online showing how these vehicles can be stolen without a key.

This can also impact newer-model Hyundai vehicles — and within the past 24 hours, SBPD officers have responded to three thefts or attempted thefts of newer-model Kia brand vehicles.

“In this case, it was pretty obvious - just within one shift - the thefts being of a similar nature,” said Ashley O’Chap, SBPD Media Liaison.

Whether you own a Kia or Hyundai vehicle or not, you can avoid making your vehicle a target by:

  • Using a steering wheel locking device
  • Parking in well-lit areas
  • Keeping doors locked at all times
  • Keeping personal belongings out of plain view
  • Reporting any suspicious activity to the South Bend Police Department

O’Chap also urged the public to avoid leaving their cars running and unattended.

“I know it’s really nice to sit into a to get into a nice warm vehicle that you’ve warmed up. But you might be warming up that vehicle for someone else who’s stealing your vehicle,” said O’Chap.

These thefts and attempted thefts remain active and ongoing investigations by the department’s Property Crimes Unit.

If you have any information, you can leave an anonymous tip with Michiana Crime Stoppers by calling 574-288-STOP.

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