Motor vehicle theft, one of the FBI’s most serious crimes, is on the rise in the United States. There were a total of 810,400 motor vehicle thefts nationwide in 2020, the highest in more than a decade.
Motor vehicle theft can be the theft or attempted theft of a vehicle, such as a car, truck, ATV, or motorcycle. Some experts attribute the increasing rates of vehicle theft to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has resulted in vehicles being left unattended and unused for longer than usual. Additionally, auto theft is often committed for monetary gain, and the pandemic has skyrocketed unemployment and left many Americans in financial difficulty.
While motorists across the country now face a higher risk of vehicle theft than they have in many years, in some parts of the country car owners are much more likely to be car theft victims than in others.
Using data from the 2020 FBI Uniform Crime Report, 24/7 Wall St. has identified the city where your car is most likely to be stolen in each state. Cities – defined as places with a population of 2,500 to 25,000 inhabitants – are classified according to the number of reported motor vehicle thefts per 100,000 inhabitants. In Hawaii, there are no eligible cities with available crime data.
Although each of the cities on this list ranks as having the highest motor vehicle theft rate in their respective state, the auto theft rates in these locations vary widely, from 137 incidents per 100,000 population to 2,861. per 100,000. Yet in every city on this list, auto theft rates exceed the state rate, and all but a few exceed the national rate of 246 per 100,000.
Motor vehicle theft, along with burglary and theft, is one of the three criminal offenses that make up the property crime category. Due in large part to higher-than-average auto theft rates, in nearly all of the cities on this list, the overall property crime rate exceeds the comparable statewide rate. Here’s a look at the 10 most stolen cars in America.
Click here to see the city where your car is most likely to be stolen in each state
Click here to see our methodology