This is no laughing matter. After years of being on the decline, car theft has returned with a vengeance in New Jersey. The numbers were already up the last few years but now it’s exploding. If you look at this time last year compared to now auto theft is up 25% in just that short span.

Last year, over 14,000 vehicles were reported stolen. And that was a 20% increase over 2020.

Personally, I feel the state attorney general’s boneheaded decision to announce auto theft alone was no longer a valid reason to pursue a fleeing suspect caused much of this. While that policy has since been changed, I think it’s clear it did damage. We heard endless stories of cars being stolen and used as getaway vehicles for gang-related drive-by shootings and many other serious crimes. They knew if all police had on them was a plate showing as hot they just needed to hit the gas and would be free.

There’s also the ongoing problem of drivers leaving cars unlocked and leaving fobs in the vehicle. Police give warnings constantly to not do this but no one thinks it will happen to them.

It’s all gotten so bad, a New Jersey congressman wants a national auto theft task force formed. U.S. Rep Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J. 5th District, is exploring this. He points out carjackings are even on the rise.

So what are you driving? Would a theft ring be targeting your particular vehicle?

Here are the five most commonly stolen cars in New Jersey so far in the early part of 2022

1 Honda Accord

Photo by Eli Clouse on Unsplash
Photo by Eli Clouse on Unsplash
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2 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Photo by Jakob Rosen on Unsplash
Photo by Jakob Rosen on Unsplash
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3 Honda CR-V

Photo by Kushan Pancholi on Unsplash
Photo by Kushan Pancholi on Unsplash
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4 BMW X5

Photo by Omar Ram on Unsplash
Photo by Omar Ram on Unsplash
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5 BMW 3-Series

Photo by Arteum.ro on Unsplash
Photo by Arteum.ro on Unsplash
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Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.

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