The Victoria Police Department assigns two Detectives full time to investigate Motor Vehicle Thefts and Motor Vehicle Burglaries. These detectives have specialized training in motor vehicle, commercial vehicle, water craft, and heavy equipment theft, and are members of the Texas Association of Vehicle Theft Investigators and International Association of Auto Theft Investigators. These positions are funded by a grant from the Texas Automobile Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority. Since 1992, the Victoria Police Department has been able to provide full time motor vehicle theft investigators with the grant.
The goals of the Motor Vehicle Theft Unit are:
To investigate all reports of motor vehicle theft and burglary reported to the Police Department, and to recover stolen automobiles and property through investigation and detection and to incarcerate the offenders of these crimes.
- To investigate, detect, and apprehend stolen vehicles in transit through Victoria
- To conduct salvage yard and other types of auto service business inspections, as well as conducting vehicle inspections, also known as Texas Department of Transportation form 68-A inspections for the public.
- To lower the incidence of auto theft and burglary by education to the public through crime prevention programs.
- To lower the incidence of vehicle burglary
- To increase the number of H.E.A.T. registrations
The Motor Vehicle Theft detectives also investigate false reports of motor vehicle theft which are usually a result of insurance fraud or persons losing their cars during drug deals (drug trades). It is estimated that 30% of all insurance claims involve some type of fraud, therefore false reporting of auto theft and insurance fraud is aggressively investigated and prosecuted.
The Motor Vehicle Theft Unit also works closely with the Crime Prevention Unit, located in the Victoria Mall Sub Station, to provide public awareness and education on auto theft and burglary prevention.
H.E.A.T. -- Help End Auto Theft
Citizens may register their vehicles in the Texas H.E.A.T. program. This allows law enforcement officers to stop your vehicle between the hours of 1:00am and 5:00am to verify that the vehicle has not been stolen. You may register your vehicle in the H.E.A.T. program or by clicking on the H.E.A.T. link.