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Property Crimes

Would You want your property, money or identity stolen?

In Alberta, property theft is real. This area of crime can involve theft, vehicle theft, possession of property obtained by crime, possession of stolen credit card and identity documents, break and enter, and robbery. Ultimately, property crime is to obtain money, property or any other material benefit.

Regardless of how property crime is carried out, it is often tied to organized crime and drugs. The property crime unit is an integrated team between the Medicine Hat Police Service and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police operating under the umbrella of ALERT.

319 Investigations

319 Investigations and assists in property crimes by ALERT during the 2021-22 year.

10 Arrests

In relation to property crimes, often perpetrated by individuals linked to organized crime (2021-22 period).

47 Charges

Laid against offenders arrested by ALERT in relation to property crimes during the 2021-22 period.

Over $3.9 Million

In stolen assets recovered by ALERT during property crimes investigations, in addition to 118 vehicles (2021-22 period).

In August of 2021, ALERT recovered nearly one million dollars worth of stolen property following an extensive investigation into stolen holiday trailers and campers. This was an organized property crime network involving VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) modification.

ONE MILLION

Areas of Property That are

Stolen

Vehicle Theft

Vehicle theft involves both the theft of vehicles themselves as well as theft of property from the inside of vehicles. This is the most frequent police call for service in relation to property crimes. Luckily, there are many easy ways to protect yourself.

Metal Theft

Metal theft commonly involves copper wire theft and catalytic converter theft. Both are becoming more prevalent due to the increasing price of these metals.

Areas of property that are

Stolen

Break & Enter

Break and enter to commit theft commonly occurs and any number of items can be stolen from a home such as tools, jewelry and firearms. Break and enter to commit theft is one of the most common ways that firearms land in criminal hands in Alberta.

ORGANIZED CRIME

Property crime relates to organized crime due to the fact that most property crimes are committed to finance offender drug use. The increasing substance addiction issue is fuelling a rise in property-related crimes, especially in relation to copper wire and catalytic converter theft. However, the money received from stolen copper wire or scrap metal is minimal compared to the damages, costs and hazards inflected to the oilfield sites (where this typically occurs).

HOW CAN YOU HELP?

The majority of thefts from vehicles happen because the owner has left their vehicle unlocked. Lock your vehicle to keep both the vehicle and the items inside secure. Furthermore, keep your garage door opener locked will prevent criminals from accessing the inside of your garage (and consequently, the items inside).

Learn more about Auto Crimes

Keep rural property and storage lots secure: place locks on your trailer hitches, boats and storage containers that contain valuables. While it might be one more step for you, it’s a significant deterrent to criminals.

Keeping your firearms properly locked and secured is the best and easiest way to help prevent firearm theft and subsequently firearm trafficking in Alberta.

Learn more about Firearm Trafficking

Keep records of serial numbers and purchase receipts for all valuable items such as bikes, tools, firearms, jewelry, etc. This will help investigators trace and recover stolen property.

Be aware of your own social media presence, and what you publish online. Try not to advertise your departure for holidays, or indications that you’re away from home as this information may become available to criminals, who might then use it to target your home or property.

Keep your valuables locked away and out of view from guests. Many Break and Enters are committed by individuals known to the victims. Furthermore, install surveillance cameras or doorbell cameras, as this footage will assist investigators in the event a crime is committed.

When selling used belongings, meet at a public space rather than at your home.

Board of Directors

Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) involves images and/or videos that depict the sexual abuse of minors – the majority of which involve prepubescent children. Often, CSAM involves explicit and/or extreme sexual assaults against the child victim (Cybertip.ca).

Learn more about Internet Child Exploitation and ALERT’s integrated teams combatting this issue.

Ghost Guns are illegal, privately manufactured firearms or lower receivers. These weapons are often made with 3D-printers, and undermine public safety due to their lack of licensing requirements, serialization and safety controls.

Learn more about Ghost Guns on ALERT’s dedicated Privately Manufactured Firearms info page