Stolen Car Numbers Increase on New Year’s Day

When most people think of the holidays, they think of visiting with family and friends, eating good food and opening presents. While the holidays are typically a happy time, they are also known for elevated levels of crime, especially theft. When families are out of town during any holiday, property crimes, including auto theft, tend to increase.

Reports by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) indicate that more cars are stolen on New Year’s Day than any other holiday. On New Year’s Day in 2009, 2,760 cars were reported stolen. Halloween came next with 2,325. Independence Day ranked third with 2,207. Memorial Day, President’s Day, Labor Day, New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day, Christmas Eve and Thanksgiving followed. Christmas was the holiday with the least amount of stolen cars, coming in at 1,336.

According to the NICB and law enforcement agencies, in 2009, the 1994 Honda Accord was the most commonly stolen vehicle in Maryland. The 2000 Dodge Caravan, 2000 Honda Civic and 2007 Toyota Camry filled the next three slots. The 2002 Dodge Intrepid ranked as the fifth most commonly stolen vehicle in the state. The FBI reports that only 52.7 percent of stolen cars are ever recovered.

It is important that people who are accused of committing auto theft understand their rights. An accused has the right to contact a lawyer to represent him or her, as well as the right to not speak with law enforcement without the attorney’s presence. Further, by law the prosecution needs to prove that the accused has stolen the vehicle in question. This typically involves locating the stolen car and uncovering evidence that the accused was responsible for the alleged theft. Without this evidence or an eyewitness account of the theft, it can be difficult for the prosecution to prove the accused committed the crime.


EldersburgPatch, “Greatest Number of Stolen Cars Occur On New Years Day,” Valerie Bonk, 1 Jan. 2011

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