Vehicle theft has always been a problem in the city of Yakima but Yakima Police Capt. Jeff Schneider says there was a big uptick in stolen cars this past month.

March saw 140 vehicles stolen which is about five per day. He says the thieves are after simple radios and other stuff they can sell for cheap.

That way they can go and get $10-20 worth of meth or heroin and that’s what’s happening here. And unfortunately we need the public's help.

Officers are urging vehicle owners, particularly owners of Hondas, to take extra precautions to protect their property. They suggest parking inside a secured garage if possible. If that’s not possible, police encourage using extra security devices like a steering wheel lock.

Schneider says most of the vehicles were stolen during the overnight hours, east of 16th Avenue and about half of the vehicles stolen were Hondas, possibly because Hondas have an ignition style that can make them more vulnerable to theft.