If you value your vehicle and the things inside, I recommend you get in the habit of locking up your car when you are not around, because car theft is on the rise in South Dakota.

Let's be honest, nothing can send your day two miles from terrible faster than discovering someone has decided to play grand theft auto with your car.

There has been a marked increase in car theft over the past couple of years in South Dakota.

KSOO-AM / ESPN Sioux Falls logo
Get our free mobile app

Shawn Steward, AAA South Dakota spokesperson told Dakota News Now, data from AAA Insurance from 2020, shows more than 2,100 vehicles were reported stolen throughout South Dakota, an increase of more than 30% from the year before.

The city of Sioux Falls saw that trend continue into 2021 as well.

Sam Clemens, with the Sioux Falls Police Department, told Dakota News Now, "The last year we saw a pretty big increase in the number of stolen cars that we had, and that really just follows the national trend."

The data shows the majority of car thefts in this country are crimes based on opportunity, and the absolute best way to prevent your car and the valuables inside from being stolen is to always be religious about locking your vehicle up.

The temptation for a car thief to steal a vehicle increases dramatically during the winter months, as more and more people are compelled to let their vehicles warm up.

According to Clemens, “We do see a number of cars that have been left running that end up being stolen, we’ve seen it out front of people’s houses, we’ve seen people that run into a gas station and leave their car running because it’s cold."

What can a person do to prevent it?

It's simple, be sure to keep an eye on your vehicle as you let it warm up.

Car theft
Getty Images/Thinkstock

Clemens says the best thing a person can do to ensure your car does not get stolen is to always make sure you take your keys with you when you exit your vehicle.

Clemens told Dakota News Now, "90% of the cars that we have stolen in Sioux Falls, the keys are left in it."

He also recommends people keep their valuables out of the car if possible, or at least out of sight. It's also smart to try and park your car where suspicious actions would be easily noticed, like a well-lit area.

If your car does get jacked, it can be an expensive experience. And these days, given the current car shortage, trying to find a new vehicle to replace your stolen car can also be challenging.

What is the most stolen vehicle in South Dakota?

If you guessed a pick-up truck you would be correct. The most recent data showed pick-up trucks are the vehicles most often reported stolen here in the Rushmore state.

What should you immediately do if your car gets stolen?

First and foremost, report it to the police ASAP! Doing so will allow law enforcement to add your stolen vehicle to their national database.

Source: Dakota News Now


Worst Parking Lots in Sioux Falls Metro

Let's face it, some of the parking lots in the Sioux Falls metro are pretty hard to navigate. Sometimes it feels as though you're taking a risk driving through them on a busy day.

We made a list of some of the worst parking lots in the Sioux Falls Metro. Be extra careful while guiding your vehicle in these tricky lots.

Is the parking lot you dread driving in the most on this list? Take a look and find out.

10 Most Dangerous Cities in South Dakota

Cities on the east and west side of the Missouri River have made the latest list of South Dakota's Most Dangerous Cities for 2021.

Roadsnacks recently released its most 'Dangerous Cities' list and here in The Mount Rushmore state there are a few surprises, especially at the top. To determine the most dangerous cities in the state, Roadsnacks looked at the FBI's report on the latest violent crime, along with property crime statistics.

And surprisingly, the town with the most murders per capita in the state has less than 3,000 residents. Take a look at the list below.

For a look at the detailed list, visit roadsnacks.com Story Source: Roadsncaks


More From KSOO-AM / ESPN Sioux Falls