Thieves appear to target certain vehicles as part of social media trend, police warn

Published: Jun. 28, 2022 at 2:32 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - The Forest Park Police Department is warning owners of Kia and Hyundai model vehicles to be vigilant as thieves appear to be targeting the car brands.

Forest Park police say there have been six reported thefts of the vehicle brands since June 21. The thefts are mostly of Kia models newer than 2011 and Hyundai models newer than 2015, according to police.

The theft of these vehicle brands seems to be part of a growing social media trend happening across the United States, police explained.

“The trend appears to have gained popularity through social media where the method to start the car without a key was spread,” Forest Park police said.

The thefts reported in Forest Park since June 21 have happened at varying locations, but police said three vehicles were stolen from large apartment complexes during the overnight hours.

Kyle Perkins is just one of the many victims

“It’s a terrible trend if I’m being honest. It’s horrible. My car is gone because of it,” he said Tuesday.

Perkins says his Hyundai was stolen from his Clifton apartment complex sometime Monday night or early Tuesday.

“I never really thought it would happen to me, but going forward I guess you can’t really watch your car every night, so I don’t know about that, but It kind of makes me deter away from Hyundai and Kia,” he said.

If you own a 2011 or newer model Kia or a 2015 or newer model Hyundai, police recommend the following steps be taken:

  • Try to park your vehicle in a secure location such as a locked garage
  • Use a steering wheel locking device
  • Try to park in well-lighted areas
  • Keep your doors locked at all times
  • Do not keep personal items or valuables in your car
  • Consider aftermarket alarm systems or anti-theft devices
  • Report any suspicious activity, especially during evening or overnight hours

Call the Forest Park Police Department at 513-595-5220 if you have information regarding the six vehicle thefts. To report a crime in progress or suspicious activity, call 513-825-2280 or 911.

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