You live in a decent neighborhood and the thought of having your car stolen is something you assume only happens in high crime areas or at large shopping malls. Then one day the unthinkable happens to you.
As many people do, you stop to fill your tank with gas and run into the gas station convenience store while it is filling up. You leave your keys in the ignition and as you are walking out of the store you see your car speed away.
Shock overcomes you as you stand watching your car get stolen. There isn’t a whole lot that you can do to stop it, the thief has your vehicle and jumping on the hood like an action hero doesn’t work in the real world.
You immediately call the police and they arrive to get the details of the crime that has just taken place. A police report is made and a description of the thief is given thanks to eyewitnesses. Now what?
The bad news is that if the thief drives your vehicle out of town without getting stopped by your local police, it is as good as gone. Once 30 minutes or more have passed without the car thief getting caught, he probably will not get caught unless he is involved in an accident with your car.
After giving all your information to the police officer, there are other things that you must do. The thief who stole your car knows where you live. If your house key was on the keychain with your car keys, you immediately need to change your locks. Although it might not happen, you also thought your car could never get stolen.
Call a locksmith or install new locks yourself. This cannot wait and it will help to give you some piece of mind.
The next thing to do is to call your insurance carrier and report your car stolen. Whether or not you carry theft insurance on your car makes no difference. You need to report your car stolen.
Another phone call you should make is to the motor vehicle department. Make sure you tell them that a police report was filed and that you have notified your insurance carrier of the theft. Your tags could be transferred to another vehicle and used in another crime. You need to protect yourself by reporting the theft.
After all this is taken care of you should give yourself a moment to feel thankful that all you lost was your vehicle. It is not always easy and certainly not convenient to become a victim of a crime such as car theft but it could have been much worse. You were not in the vehicle when it was stolen and for that you need to be grateful.
Make a list of all the items that you did have in your car even if you do not have insurance to replace them. It stinks to think about the personal items that you might have lost but once again, you need to be thankful that you were not personally attacked although it sure feels like you were violated.
Many people make the mistake of leaving their keys in their car’s ignition while they leave it unattended for just a minute. Unfortunately in today’s world, even in what felt like a safe and familiar area, crime happens. Learn a lesson from this and be more careful in the future. Crime can and will happen when you least expect it.