PITTSBURG -- Police are urging residents to protect their vehicles after a recent spike in car thefts in the city and throughout East Contra Costa County, a police lieutenant said Friday.

Auto thieves in the past few months have struck areas throughout Pittsburg and surrounding communities and do not appear to be targeting any specific area, Pittsburg police Lt. Ron Raman said.

Police have met with members of the city's residential and commercial communities to spread awareness about the alarming trend.

Meanwhile, officers are beefing up surveillance operations, probation searches and use of automatic license plate readers to catch unsuspecting auto thieves, Raman said.

He said residents can greatly reduce the risk of their vehicle being stolen or burglarized by always locking the vehicle, using an alarm or anti-theft device and parking in well-lit areas.

The public is encouraged to report any suspicious activity to police at 925-646-2441.



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