A 25-year-old man who was believed to be responsible for a 350 per cent spike in thefts from vehicles in Ladysmith was sentenced to seven months in jail and nine months probation on July 19.
Ladysmith RCMP Staff Sergeant Roger Plamondon said the male, Derek Vautour, who had recently moved to Ladysmith from another community, was caught after using a stolen credit card at a local business.
Police also found his fingerprints in a few vehicles.
“We were only able to get enough information to pinpoint him to a couple of thefts from motor vehicles here in the community,” Plamondon said. “Surveillance camera footage had him using the card.”
Since the arrest was made, vehicle theft incidences have already started to normalize in the area.
“In terms of the theft from motor vehicles, we average three per week in the community, and we had spikes where we had as many as 12 reported per week at our detachment,” Plamondon said.
As always, the RCMP encourages members of the public not to leave valuables in the car, especially their wallets or anything to do with personal identification.
“We’re always concerned about identity theft,” Plamondon said.
Plamondon said it is most important to keep your vehicle locked at all times, as the majority of thefts the RCMP see are related to unlocked vehicles.
“There is no safe spot to leave anything in a vehicle if you’re going out, even if it’s just for a minute or two,” he said. “Take your wallet with you, take your camera with you. Don’t leave anything inside.”