After months of a general public perception that the Chapala area enjoys a low rate of high impact robbery, the scenario has undergone a dramatic shift over the past week with a rash of auto thefts reported through local social media networks.
The recent register of stolen cars points to prime locations in the span between Riberas del Pilar and San Antonio Tlayacapan.
A wine-colored 2001 Jeep Wrangler disappeared from the front of a residence in Riberas del Pilar in the early hours of Thursday, September 8. Another car parked outside an apartment building in Riberas was stolen the following night.
Thieves also spirited away at least two cars from parking spots bordering the highway in San Antonio.
And attempted auto theft was also noted for unleashing the shootout between police and three suspects in Riberas that occurred Tuesday, September 13.
Sketchy details provided by victims do not allow for determination of a common modus operandi employed by the perpetrators or whether they may all pertain to a single criminal gang.
Vehicle owners would be well advised to step up security measures for the time being. Practical tactics include using clubs to lock up steering wheels, installing hidden kill switches that prevent motor ignition, and using keys instead of rather clicker fobs to manually secure doors. GPS vehicle tracking systems are known to be valuable for both locating stolen cars and using remote control to turn off engines.