California Highway Patrol says Bakersfield has some of the highest rates of car theft in the nation, surpassing every other city in the county in 2019. And local police say those numbers are only going up this year.
Bakersfield resident Nichole Hobson watched a thief drive away with her boyfriend’s pickup truck on Mar. 7 just after 6 am. She says it happened faster than an oil change.
“An individual drove down our street in a red truck, got out of the vehicle and walked up to my boyfriend’s truck,” said Hobson. “And it was like he had a key. He opened the door with no problem. He takes off and he’s gone for three to five minutes.”
Experts say Hobson isn’t alone.
“In approximately a week we’ll see 100 to 120 vehicles stolen in the city of Bakersfield,” said Sgt. Robert Pair, Public Information Officer for the Bakersfield Police Department.
(This story has been corrected. The headline in an earlier version stated over 100 cars were stolen daily. It has now been corrected to state the estimate is a weekly number of thefts.)