NY1 Covers Sen. Klein's Anti-Rim Theft Legislation

July 10, 2011

Bronx Politicians Want Police To Be Able To Track Stolen Car RimsBy: Dean MemingerBronx lawmakers have introduced legislation to allow car rims to have identification numbers, to help law enforcement battle the rising number of stolen rims in the borough. NY1's Criminal Justice reporter Dean Meminger filed the following report.Car rims can make a ride stand out and set back drivers several hundred or even several thousand dollars, and apparently thieves are taking notice. "In the last month or so, three cars [on my block] have been hit, where they stole the rims," said Bronx resident Steven Novellino. According to New York City Police Department statistics, it is especially a problem in the Bronx. State Senator Jeff Klein's office got NYPD numbers for five precincts in the north Bronx. In 2009, there were 189 rim thefts in those precincts. It increased to 253 thefts in 2010, and so far in 2011, there have already been 138 rims reported stolen. "Standard cars, not even very expensive ones, have very fancy rims. They look cool on a car, people like them," said Klein. Crooks also make big money selling the hot wheels."It is a tremendous underground market because there is no one to track these rims," Klein said. "What happens in many cases, there is no way we can actually ever recover the stolen property."Klein and Bronx Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz have introduced legislation to mandate some sort of identification number on rims to help law enforcement track down the stolen property. Some Bronx residents said this is a good move, as they are concerned. "She parked in the lot that has valet parkers. She came out, her car was towards the back on four cinder blocks -- no tires, no rims. All gone," said Bronx worker Sharon Hoffman.