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Portland police warn public of car thieves' deception technique

Four separate victims reported a similar tactic used by thieves to police.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Portland police are warning the public about a tactic being used to steal cars in Southeast Portland.

Authorities said there have been four incidents of stolen cars in Portland where victims described the same type of scenario. The victims said 2-4 teenage boys ran up to their vehicles, banging on the windows saying something was the matter with the car or hanging out of the back of the car and when the victim gets out to check, one of the teens gets into the car and drives off.

The victims have all been women driving alone.

Portland police released the following about the incidents:

  • Tuesday, October 12, 2021, at about 3 p.m., a Ford Fusion was stolen from a 29-year-old female at Southeast 28th Avenue and Southeast Woodward Street. The car was recovered unoccupied on Oct.13 in the 5700 block of Southeast 72nd Avenue(21-285288).
  • At 5:45 p.m., at Southeast Tibbetts Street and Southeast Cesar E. Chavez Boulevard, a Subaru Outback was stolen from a 47-year-old female driver. It was recovered Oct. 15 parked near Northeast Sandy Boulevard and Northeast 119th Avenue. (21-285307)
  • On Thursday, October 14, 2021, at 4:32 p.m., a Subaru Outback was stolen from a 75-year-old female driver at Southeast 28th Avenue and Southeast Franklin Street (21-287382).
  • Twenty minutes later at 4:52 p.m, the same technique was used to steal a Kia Sorento from a 36-year-old female at Southeast Cesar E. Chavez Boulevard and Southeast Lambert Street (21-287400).

RELATED: More than 900 cars were stolen in Portland in September alone

None of the victims were threatened or injured. Portland police advise the public don’t open their doors if they are approached in this way until they have driven somewhere where it is safe to do so. If anyone has any information about any of these incidents, they are asked to e-mail crimetips@portlandoregon.gov.

RELATED: Portland police make arrest in May shooting case

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