By Marielle Mohs

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As temperatures drop, car thefts are picking up.

In just the first two weeks of December, more than 100 drivers lost their wheels in Minneapolis alone.

“I’ve left my car running a couple times, especially when it was cold,” said driver Justin Sorensen.

“I do it too,” driver Shiquiya Springfield said.

In Roseville, it was easy to find drivers who admitted to leaving their cars running and unattended to keep them warm.

“I didn’t think anyone would want my car, it’s not the best, but it’s a car, so,” Sorensen said.

Roseville Police say they’ve had over a dozen stolen vehicles.

“One of the things that really stood out is a majority of them that are being stolen were being stolen with the keys inside and several of them running,” Roseville Deputy Chief Erika Scheider said.

Scheider says just this week two cars were stolen within 30 minutes of each other at mall parking lots.

“They were stolen from two different locations, both malls within our city and people left their cars running, keys inside while they went inside shopping,” Scheider said.

Scheider says the thefts are widespread in Roseville, with malls, gas stations and daycares being the most common places cars are stolen.

This is a growing strend throughout the Twin Cities right now.

St. Paul Police has had 181 stolen vehicles in the last month and 40% of them were left unattended with the keys in the ignition.

In Minneapolis, there have been over 200 cars stolen in the last month.

“I do, but I try to make it really quick,” Springfield said.

But quick is just enough time to commit the crime.

“Really, that’s all it takes for somebody to steal, it is just a couple of minutes,” Scheider said.

If there is any silver lining to all of this, police say in many of these cases, the stolen cars are eventually recovered. Still, it’s not worth the risk.

Marielle Mohs

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