Clark County, Nv., had the second-highest rate of auto theft in the nation in 2005, moving up one place from its 2004 ranking, says a National Insurance Crime Bureau study reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Clark County’s auto theft total rose to 22,465 last year, a 13 percent increase over the year before. “Auto theft is down nationally. It’s down everywhere but the West,” said Frank Scafidi of the crime bureau. Nevada has some of the highest auto insurance rates in the nation.
It is primarily Las Vegas’ “target-rich environment” — the high number of parking garages and parking lots — that makes Southern Nevada a hot spot for car thieves. Hondas of all makes and models continue to be the most popular vehicle stolen in Las Vegas, followed by Dodge trucks. The Modesto, Ca., area had the highest rate of auto theft in the nation last year, with 1,418 vehicles stolen per 100,000 residents, according to the bureau. The top 10 cities and areas with the highest rate of auto theft were all in the West.