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PHOTOGRAPHY YVANDUBE/ISTOCK SUMMER 2021 | 23 AUTO THEF T AUTO THEFT IS ON THE RISE IN CANADA. HERE'S HOW THIEVES STEAL YOUR CAR, AND WHAT HAPPENS TO IT NEXT by MATT BUBBERS DRIVEN T HE FIRST TIME IT happened was on a winter morning in 2018. "My wife went outside with the kids to take them to school, and our car was gone," Greg Hunter says. "No broken glass, nothing. It just disappeared in the night." Their 2016 Toyota Highlander was stolen from the driveway of their home on a suburban street in Mississauga, Ont. Then, it happened again this past October during the pandemic. Their 2018 Toyota Highlander — purchased using the insurance payout from the previous the—was taken, too. "I was just completely shocked," Hunter says. "My wife was like, 'You're kidding me, right?'" CAR THEFT ON THE RISE Stories like this are increasingly common in Canada. Automobile the is on the rise according to the latest data from Statistics Canada. In 2019 alone, 87,066 vehicles were stolen nationwide, up from 78,800 vehicles in 2015. On average, a vehicle is stolen every six minutes in this country, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada ( IBC), a national industry association. Mark Haywood is the detective in charge of Peel Regional Police's Commercial Auto Crime Bureau, oen referred to as the auto squad. When he returns aer the weekend, there are about 40 new reports of stolen vehicles waiting for him. "We're doing everything we can," Haywood says. "You're basically trying to find a needle in a stack of needles." The Toronto area alone accounts for roughly 12 percent of all stolen vehicles in the country, according to Statistics Canada. At a provincial level, Ontario

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