Baltimore’s Car Theft Problem Keeps Growing

Estimated read time 3 min read

But leaders and media outlets keep finding scapegoats instead of solutions.

A recent report from WBFF out of Baltimore shines a light on a trend we’ve been watching grow in many cities, including Denver, Portland, and Seattle. Car thefts just keep increasing, even though a few years ago the common refrain was the crime was being fueled by covid lockdowns.

Watch teens laugh after crashing a Kia into a store.

WBFF cites statistics from the Baltimore Police Department that don’t look good at all. So far, over 3,000 car thefts have been reported. In a city where anti-police sentiment still runs incredibly strong, how many more car thefts haven’t been reported? Even if the number were zero, that’s a big number which constitutes a 138% increase over the same time period in 2022.

Thankfully, the report points out another thing we know to be true: car thefts are usually used to help commit other crimes. Call it a barometer of criminal activity in a city if you will. Stealing cars provides getaway vehicles when robbing businesses, transportation for drive-by shootings, and selling those rides helps fun other criminal activities.

Ignoring the rise in car theft, pushing to defund/defame the police, explaining away the growing trend, and other distraction strategies have only allowed this problem to balloon in far too many cities like Baltimore. Now the media, which aided and abetted the distractions, along with city leaders are having to come to grips with the consequences of their actions.

This is what happens when cops are made to feel guilty for chasing down kids and adults who steal cars. After all, insurance supposedly covers the costs of a stolen vehicle, so it’s a victimless crime. This is also what happens when prosecutors in the name of some new form of justice decide to dismiss cases against car thieves or provide sweetheart deals as thieves are turned back onto the street before officers can even file their paperwork.

It’s because of all this we’re skeptical about the pearl-clutching many media outlets, politicians, and bureaucrats are doing about car theft rates. In most of these cities, the upward trend has been going on for the past four years, so why is it such a big deal now?

By the way, the WBFF focuses on the latest scapegoat for the car theft trend: Kia and Hyundai. While not installing engine immobilizers on many models has made them easy to steal, and that certainly isn’t helping with the problem, car theft rates were increasing long before thuggish kids learned how to steal those vehicles through TikTok. It’s just another distraction from the root causes of the problem propagated by the people who don’t want you figuring out their culpability in it all.

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Steven Symes

Steven Symes is an accomplished automotive journalist with a passion for all things related to cars. His extensive knowledge and love for the automotive world shine through in his writing, which covers a diverse range of topics.

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