WESTFIELD, NJ — Another unlocked car has been stolen in Westfield — this time during broad daylight, from a train station parking lot — a more brazen act than other recent thefts, which have mostly occurred in residential areas at night.
The car, which was stolen from the North Avenue side of the Westfield Train station between 3 and 5 p.m. Saturday afternoon, has since been recovered, police said in a Nixle alert on Monday.
“The car, which was recovered on Sunday in Newark, was apparently left unlocked and the key fob was unaccounted for,” police said.
On Aug. 7, Police Chief Christopher Battiloro reported that thieves had stolen 19 motor vehicles and burglarized another 40 during the first seven months and seven days of this year.
It marks a rise in the frequency of such thefts over last year when the town saw 22 vehicles stolen and 70 burglarized, Battiloro said. In 2018, Westfield reported 26 vehicle thefts and in 2017 the town reported 27 such thefts, uniform crime reports from state police show.
Town police have partnered with the New Jersey State Police Auto Theft Task Force to combat the growing problem, according to the chief.
This month, police have arrested six teenagers from Essex County in connection with the theft attempts, including three alleged to have stolen two vehicles in the immediate aftermath Tropical Storm Isaias and three other teens charged in the theft of a vehicle taken from Topping Hill Road.
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