Police warning as cold-hearted thieves snatch defrosting cars left running on drives

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A Totton car owner was one of three victims of vehicle theft

POLICE are urging motorists not to leave their vehicles unoccupied with the engine running while defrosting them on cold mornings following a spate of thefts.

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One of the incidents, which all took place on Wednesday morning, involved a silver Vauxhall Astra being stolen around 7.30am from an address on Salcombe Road in Totton.

At around 6.45am, a black Lexus was taken from Brookwood Road in Southampton; and a silver Volkswagen Touran was driven away around 7.40am from King George’s Avenue in the city.

There was also an attempt made to steal a car from the driveway of an address in Bossington Close, Rownhams, around 6.10am, but the offender fled on foot after stalling it.

PC Simon Peacock said: “We’re advising residents not to leave their cars running while unattended.

“A lot of newer vehicles are keyless and owners sometimes assume that it’s safe to leave them running as long as they don’t leave the key inside.

“However, this isn’t the case, and these vehicles can still be stolen even if the key isn’t actually in the vehicle. Do not leave your vehicle running and unattended under any circumstances.”

He continued: “We are keen to speak to anyone who thinks they might know where any of these cars are parked or being kept.

“We would also like to hear from anyone who was in any of these areas at the time of the thefts, or anyone who might have been driving in the areas with dashcams in their vehicles.”

Anyone with information should contact the Hampshire force on 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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