Salt Lake City police urge shoppers to stow valuables in trunk

This is an archived article that was published on in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Salt Lake City Police are reminding people to stow valuables in the trunks of their cars — whether parking downtown or on the street at home.

From mid-August to mid-November this year there were 324 reported car prowls, police reported Tuesday.

That is down from 446 during the same period last year.

However, as the holiday shopping season begins, the data is beginning to show spikes of activity downtown, according to investigators.

Officers on Monday night conducted a sting operation to curtail vehicle burglaries in the downtown area, but no arrests or incidents were reported.

Vehicles were left with assorted electronics and personal items as bait, said Detective Rick Wall.

"It's an ongoing thing," Wall said. "We're going to work very diligently. We want the community as well as the offenders to know we are going to be out there."

A Salt Lake Tribune analysis of verified crimes handled by Salt Lake City Police during all of 2011 found that more than 3,600 people reported a vehicle break-in to Salt Lake City police.

While most were scattered throughout the city, the Tribune analysis found about 34 percent of all car prowls happened downtown or in Sugar House.