Keep the Car, Thieves Want Your Seats

ABC News
Beyond The Headline

It may not be "Grand Theft Auto," but it is "Gone in 60 seconds." Thieves steeling, not the car, but the 3rd row seats in under a minute.

At a car dealership in Simi Valley, CA this week, police say a suspect - or suspects - stole seats from 16 Chevy Tahoe’s, petty crime for big profit. The estimated value: $48,000.

3rd row seat thefts are a growing problem throughout the state of California and across the country. It's a grab-and-go crime the way car radios were in the 1980's, because these seats are designed to be so easy to take out. Thieves sell them on Craigslist & eBay at more than $1500 per seat.

It can cost more than twice that much to replace them at the dealer, so if you've got those 3rd row seats you should take some precautions to protect yourself.

"It's something that's very simple. With a little bit of time and effort people can protect themselves,” says Det. Mike Ventura of the LAPD.

To prevent theft, police recommend etching your Vehicle ID number onto the seats, remove and store seats that are not being used, or buy back seat locks.