The Valemount RCMP are investigating the theft of a local vehicle and the theft of items and change from a number of other local vehicles last week. Some time overnight between June 7th and 8th, unknown persons entered and rummaged through “a large number” of unlocked vehicles in Valemount apparently ranging between 3rd and 9th Avenues, culminating in the theft of a vehicle from an address on 3rd Avenue.
Const. James Bos says they have several suspects but have not yet made any arrests. He wouldn’t say whether the suspects are Valemount residents. They are hoping to receive more information from the public to confirm or deny their suspicions.
He says the report of stolen items was around $500 plus the value of the stolen vehicle.
“There tends to be an assumption in smaller towns that because we figure we know everybody in town, that security of personal property falls by the wayside.”
He says the tendency is to think thefts such as these are one-time incidents.
“Especially in a town like Valemount where we have thousands of people passing through our town every night, by and large most of them carry on right on through, we don’t know what the highway is going to bring to us. We’ve dealt with some pretty interesting individuals as a result of the highway.”
He says “car shopping” – checking the doors and stealing whatever’s not nailed down – is not unusual in cities.
“They happen all the time in larger communities – there’s a certain group that knows you can make a lot of money doing that.”
He says criminals can come to a place like Valemount and not only do people leave their car doors unlocked, but may also leave keys, ID, driver’s license and their entire wallet.
“We may wind up setting ourselves up as an easy target.”
He says residents can also deter thefts by installing motion lights and better lighting in general in front of their homes and, of course, locking their vehicles, bikes and homes.
The Valemount RCMP are reminding residents to lock their vehicles and residences overnight and when they are away from them and to avoid leaving valuable, identification and items such as keys in their vehicles.
The Valemount RCMP are seeking the public’s assistance with this matter. Anyone with information is asked to call the RCMP Detachment at 250-566-4466 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.