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Auto thefts cause worry, frustration for Bakersfield residents and businesses

Car Theft
Posted at 5:50 PM, Sep 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-07 23:24:43-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Bakersfield has the dubious distinction of being the number one city for stolen cars in the nation. Many Bakersfield residents have been victims of car theft, and many businesses too.

Trish Oscarson, owner of Take Care Day Preschool, had her company van stolen.

“My heart sank because I had this van for 22 years and I use it for my business,” said Oscarson.

Oscarson also says that losing the van has impacted her business dramatically, and its loss has been a burden for her and the children she teaches.

“That’s hard when you’re relying on it everyday. I mean, we go to the park in the fall, we go to the zoo. I want to give these kids opportunities for their lives to be enriched,” said Oscarson. “The reason why I do my preschool at home is so that I can be like that second parent and give them these experiences while their parents are working.”

Aside from the hardship to her business and her kids, having her van stolen has also impacted Oscarson’s piece of mind. She says that after the van was stolen, she is constantly on the lookout for any suspicious activity in her neighborhood, living in a constant state of fear.

“It causes a great big deal of worry and I don’t like it,” said Oscarson. “At this point, I don’t sleep too much because I am constantly looking at my camera and wonder, like, who is out there.”

The Bakersfield Police Department and California Highway Patrol says you can help prevent your car from being stolen by using aftermarket steering locks and alarm systems, but there are things you can do that are even more basic. Locking your car, parking in well-lit areas, and never leaving a key to the car inside the vehicle are all simple things that might discourage a would-be car thief.

If your car is stolen, law enforcement advises that you contact your local police immediately for assistance.