Date Posted: Wednesday, July 31st, 2019

Kent County-  The Delaware State Police would like to warn the public about leaving their cars unattended while idling.

The Delaware State Police, Troop 3 Property Crimes Unit has recently been handling a rash of vehicle thefts occurring in the Kent County area.  While some of the thefts have been occurring from car dealerships and rental car businesses after hours, others have been from gas stations in which a vehicle was left unattended, idling, and unlocked.

The most common practice is a victim leaving their car running in a parking lot while they go into a store for a quick purchase. Some car thieves look for cars idling in parking lots and once they see a car is left unattended, all they literally have to do is walk up and drive away.

Delaware law states; (Title 21, § 4182) Unattended motor vehicle.  No person driving or in charge of a motor vehicle shall permit it to stand unattended without first stopping the engine, locking the ignition, removing the key and effectively setting the brake thereon and, when standing upon any grade, turning the front wheels to the curb or side of the highway.  For a first offense, a fine of $25.00 – $75.00 can be imposed.

The suspects in these most recent cases appear to be juvenile males.  Anyone with information regarding these incidents is asked to contact Detective Nash at (302) 698-8444 or Detective Beck at (302) 698-8527.  Information may also be provided by calling Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333 or via the internet at

You can follow the Delaware State Police by clicking on:

Delaware State Police Official Web Site




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Presented by the Director of Public Information, Master Corporal Melissa Jaffe

Released: 073119 1258


Contact Det. Nash at (302) 698-8444 and Det. Beck (302) 698-8527 with any information.




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