ATPA Executive Director Addresses Schuylkill County Theft Prevention

Pottsville (November 5, 2015) Steven Wheeler, executive director of the Pennsylvania Auto Theft Prevention Authority (ATPA) will be a featured speaker at Schuylkill County District Attorney Christine A. Holman’s law enforcement symposium on November 6, 2015 in Pottsville.

The full day event is for local, county, and state law enforcement professionals. Speakers will include an agent with the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, a postal inspector, drug recognition experts, legislators, a child interview specialist and others. Wheeler will address local and statewide vehicle theft prevention.

“Combating vehicle theft is becoming a more specialized skill,” said Wheeler. “Cars are harder to steal now and thieves are more sophisticated. We want law enforcement agencies across the state to know we are a resource for them to help prevent, detect, and enforce vehicle theft crimes.”

More than 13,000 vehicles were stolen in Pennsylvania last year. While many cars are stolen as a crime of opportunity by joyriders, many more are stolen by professional, organized crime rings who also engage in violence, financial fraud, identity theft, and international trafficking. ATPA task forces in rural areas identify and track heavy equipment theft.

For more information on how to protect yourself or what to do if your car is stolen, visit ATPA’s website or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)’s resource page for national statistics and information.

Created in 1994 by the state legislature, the Pennsylvania Auto Theft Prevention Authority provides grants statewide to a number of law enforcement agencies and prosecutors with the goal of reducing auto theft. The Authority has demonstrated significant and cost-effective success in achieving that objective, especially when compared to nearby states. During the past decade, the rate of auto theft in Pennsylvania has declined 52%. For more information about auto theft in Pennsylvania, county-by-county statistics, and theft prevention tips, visit

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