Edmonton police cruiser.
Shaughn Butts / Postmedia, file
Police are asking motorists to take extra precautions with their licence plates to ensure it isn’t stolen or swapped.As of May 21, police say 1,240 plates have been stolen in Edmonton, a decrease from the 1,585 plates stolen during the same period in 2017 and an increase from the 1,176 stolen in 2018. A total of 8,236 licence plates have been stolen in Edmonton since 2017.“Most registered owners don’t realize their licence plate has been stolen or even swapped with another one until they are contacted by police,” said Const. Brendan Power of the EPS specialized traffic apprehension team in a Monday news release. “It’s not just making sure you have a licence plate, it’s making sure it’s yours.”Police are asking drivers to routinely walk behind their vehicles to read their plate. Motorists can also use nuts and bolts or a licence plate lock kit to make them harder to steal.Police have recorded 46 criminal evading police incidents using stolen plates this year, 14 of which were used with stolen vehicles. Landis Reichle, EPS spokesperson said officers have noticed a trend of vehicle owners unaware their plates were stolen or swapped until they were contacted by police.Power said police respond to disguised vehicles on an “almost daily basis.”“If we know that a plate has been reported as stolen, we can utilize different tactics to apprehend the people involved in a manner that is safer for the public, the police and the suspects,” said Const. Power.Edmontonians can report a stolen licence plate by contacting EPS by phone at 780-423-4567 or in person at a police firstname.lastname@example.org