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I have been told that a conservative is a Canadian who has been car-jacked.

Last weekend, my wife took our car, an Olds station wagon of the 8-seat type no-one likes to make any more, to a wedding in Kitchener. The old car developed a new issue and was unable to make the trip home from the wedding.

My wife called CAA, and the car was towed back to our mechanic in Guelph.

Some time between when we dropped the car at the garage and Tuesday morning following the long weekend, someone broke into our car using an appropriate tool inserted into the passenger side door, not breaking any windows or punching the locks. The thief made off with two radio scanners that I use for trainspotting, one attached to the dashboard, and one that I grab and take with me when I get out of the car. They went through the trouble of unwiring the antenna from the roof, unplugging the power cable from the extension cord on the floor, and cutting the string used to hold the scanner in place.

They left my GPS, camera tripod, CB radio, and an assortment of other odds and ends in spite of having clearly spent a good amount of time removing my scanners.

When I got my car back Tuesday afternoon with the mass air sensor replaced, I found it down one antenna, all the wires unplugged, and a small amount of disarray in the car.

I filed a report with the police and checked the local pawn shops, but there doesn't seem to be a whole lot more I can do.

Who does these things? And why?

The professionalism of this robbery - not damaging the car, taking only the valuable radios and antenna, leaving the rest - suggests that it isn't local drug addicts looking to pawn stuff off for their next quick fix.

Perhaps they were intent on using the scanners to monitor the police, which would be futile in this area as they are consumer grade analogue scanners and the police use encrypted digital radios around here.

What can be done about this kind of crime? What problems have we allowed into our society to allow people to grow into thieves in the first place?

I don't believe the police have the time to seriously investigate "petty" crimes like this, so the people who do them can proceed with impunity until caught red-handed.

Will stiffer penalties solve anything? Some people would have us believe so, but it fails to address the fundamental question of why these thefts take place in the first place. It also means more resources are allocated to keeping people who are caught in jail, but doesn't do anything about the people who get away without being caught.

I suppose I have a lot of thinking to do.

Posted at 09:38 on July 10, 2006

This entry has been archived. Comments can no longer be posted.

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Nathan writes at Mon Jul 10 19:46:56 2006...

I hope they catch the ones responsible and hold the to their every will.

annie writes at Sun Jul 16 14:47:07 2006...

For me, the most frustrating part of having scanners or radio equipment stolen, is they probably won't be of any use to those who took them and will either be trashed or abandoned somewhere.


The mechanics shop didn't happen to be on York Road did it?

cdlu writes at Mon Jul 17 08:45:23 2006...

Nope... Gordon street at the South end.

brian writes at Sun Aug 6 10:31:14 2006...

what a shame. well i hope these idiots turn them on and all they here is 'CN 309 clearance on north track no restrictions'. its pathetic that this has to go on.

what goes around comes around, these theives will get theirs. keep your head up and keep railfanning!

randy writes at Tue Aug 8 18:05:20 2006...

Perhaps while trying to make them 'work' they will be so distracted (how hard is it to distract a single-braincell organism) and meet the front of a Geep -- like a fly on a windshield. And the Geep built by GMD. Now THAT's justice...

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