Redding, Calif -- To many a car is an extension of themselves.
It's how you get to work, how you visit friends, and how you drive through life.
But to some people in the north state, that security is taken away the moment they walk outside and their car is gone.
Over the last year, Redding police have seen an increase in vehicle thefts.
With nearly 40 cars being reported stolen in December alone.
"Car thefts were up last year by 50 percent that's pretty significant,” said Redding Police statistician Mike Murphy.
But law enforcement officers in Shasta County have been working hard to put a halt to the thefts.
On wednesday - chp awarded six officers from anderson , redding, and the shasta county sheriff's office for their efforts in recovering more than 70 stolen cars in 2017.
"Out of those six officers they recovered 37 occupied stolen meaning someone was in the vehicle and they were arrested. 35 abandoned stolens which mean noone was around when they were recovered,"said CHP Officer Jason Morton.
Many people i spoke with today say they didn't know car theft was a problem in the north state.
"That's surprising in one way that i didnt know cars were being stolen. But it makes sense sort of sort of the area," says local Kaleb Oechsli.
But others - who have lived here for years -- say these awards could be a step in the right direction.
"Hopefully it will get the message out to whoever is doing this that you know its not ok," said Miranda Warner.
Officers say 40 percent of stolen vehicles are crimes of opportunity , meaning the car was either left unlocked or a valuable was left in plain view.
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