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Muskegon Police Department
Monday January 30th, 2017 :: 10:54 a.m. EST


Preventable Unlawful Driving Away of an Automobile

In light of recent incidents the Public Safety Office would like to remind residents that leaving your car running while unattended can lead to unintended consequences. A number of vehicles each year are stolen or unlawfully driven away when left running with the key in the ignition. Once such incident occurred in this jurisdiction just in the past few days.

This again is a crime of opportunity which is preventable. Even if you lock the door and use a second set of keys, leaving your car running with the keys in the ignition may make your vehicle look like an easy target for a criminal. The exception to this would be a vehicle that can be started without a key and that has an automatic shut off mechanism if the car is placed into drive.

Over the past year we have been trying to get the word out about always locking your car doors and not leaving valuables in plain sight as thieves tend to look for easy targets where they can commit their crime quickly and leave the scene. Leaving your car running with the keys in the ignition falls into this same category.

Also, please note the following which is taken from the Uniform Traffic Code:

R 28.1458 Rule 458. Requirements when leaving motor vehicle unattended; violation as civil infraction.
(1) A person who has control or charge of a motor vehicle shall not allow the vehicle to stand unattended on any street or any other place without first stopping the engine, locking the ignition, and removing and taking possession of the ignition key. The provisions of this rule that pertain to the locking of the ignition and removing and taking possession of the ignition key do not apply to motor vehicles that are
manufactured with an ignition system that does not have a key and that is incapable of being locked.
(2) A person who violates this rule is responsible for a civil infraction.

Muskegon Police Department
980 Jefferson Street
Muskegon, MI 49440

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 231-724-6750

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