Stafford Twp Police Plan to Stop Stolen Cars Causes Controversy
The police in Stafford Township announced an unusual and admittedly controversial campaign to prevent car thefts in a Facebook message Tuesday. The posting, which has received hundreds of shares and comments, has some people convinced the idea is a joke.
During the Stafford Twp. Police "Lock Your Vehicle" campaign, police say they will be going out nightly into neighborhoods after 9 pm to check if "high-end cars" are locked. If your car is found unlocked, Stafford Township Police say you can expect a visit from them at your door.
"If a car is found to be unlocked or with a key fob inside, we will be knocking on citizens' doors to notify them of their unsecured vehicle."
While many people responding to the Facebook post have thanked the police for going to such lengths to protect their property, some of the responses questioned why the police were only interested in making sure "high-end" vehicles aren't stolen.
Others worried that this stolen car prevention effort would take police away from other important work in Stafford Township.
Later in the day Tuesday, Stafford Twp Police posted a response to their own Facebook message to explain their reasoning.
While our post is clearly controversial, we will stand behind doing EVERYTHING in our power to serve and protect the citizens of Stafford Township. This includes getting our “lock your vehicle” message out to residents through both social media and traditional formats, as well as thinking out of the box with our most recent proactive approach of checking vehicles. While this method does take time from our patrol officers, it does not compare to the time and resources that it takes to fully investigate each and very motor vehicle theft and vehicle burglary that occurs. High-end vehicles are our main focus, because high end vehicles have been the main target of motor vehicle thefts in our area. Our main objective, again, is to serve and protect our residents. As always, we appreciate your support and any assistance from the public with getting our #9PMRoutine messages out. Thank you!
So you will be searching my property without my permission and without a search warrant? What if you see something illegal in an unlocked car? Cop or not, open my car without cause and I’ll make sure you get charged. This is out of hand.
There hasn't been any response from police about that legal question or others which are sure to come up when police begin checking car doors to see if they are locked.
Most people responding to the Facebook post didn't seem to care about the legality.
While your diligence is so appreciated, it’s sad that our local PD needs to waste their valuable time (and resources) doing something like this. Your time is, and should be, so much more valuable than that.
Just lock your car doors, people… why is this so hard?