Local woman speaks out after Hyundai stolen by thieves

[anvplayer video=”5162618″ station=”998131″]

ROCHESTER, N.Y. On Tuesday, Kia and Hyundai promised to upgrade more than 3 million cars that are the targets of thieves.

They also promised to hand out more steering wheel locks for free. 700 came to Rochester earlier this week. News10NBC found a mother who could have used one. Elisha Cruz picked up on the only thing left from her Hyundai: a small piece of window shattered by thieves who took her car early Sunday morning.

Elisha Cruz: “It’s been a mess. I can’t go to work because where I work I use my car. So without my car, I cannot work.”

Cruz is among the hundreds of owners who have had their Kia or Hyundai stolen.

Elisha Cruz: “I’ve been having headaches, chest pains. My daughter, who is autistic, she’s been stressed out. She’s been having behavioral problems.”

Tuesday, RPD released hundreds of free steering wheel locks for Kia and Hyundai owners who live in the city. The trend is starting to change. Last month, the city averaged 150 stolen cars over a two-week period. Now it’s below 100.

Lt. Greg Bello, RPD: “So the number is starting to trend down. I’m hopeful we can continue that trend and bring it down to zero or near zero.”

Elisha Cruz watches the news and knew what was happening, but every time she went to buy a steering wheel lock, the stores were sold out.

Elisha Cruz: “I kind of knew it was coming.”
Brean: “What do you mean you knew it was coming?”
Cruz: “Because they’ve been stealing Kias and Hyundais.”
Brean: “You just felt like it was only a matter of time before you got targeted.”
Cruz: “Exactly.”

I told Elisha about the free locks at her neighborhood center. Some thieves have used stolen cars to crash into small businesses to steal money.