Police failed to solve three out of four car thefts last year and just 2% of cases involved a suspect being charged, figures reveal

Three in four car thefts went unsolved last year, figures revealed yesterday.

Data shared with the Daily Mail showed that police failed to get to the bottom of more than 100,000 cases of stolen motor vehicles in England and Wales in the year ending last September.

And just 2 per cent resulted in a suspect being charged or summonsed, according to House of Commons Library analysis commissioned by the Liberal Democrats.

Three in four car thefts went unsolved last year, figures revealed yesterday (Stock Photo)

Amid rising figures for all car theft, the data showed that unsolved cases were up 7 per cent on the previous year.

Some 76 per cent of motor vehicle thefts were unsolved in both the year ending September 2022 and the year ending September 2023.

London's Metropolitan Police saw the worst outcomes, with 86 per cent of car thefts going unsolved (File Photo)

London’s Metropolitan Police saw the worst outcomes, with 86 per cent of car thefts going unsolved (File Photo)

London’s Metropolitan Police saw the worst outcomes, with 86 per cent of car thefts going unsolved, while Essex and South Yorkshire were close behind.

The Lib Dems blamed years of ‘ineffective resourcing’ for leaving police forces overstretched and unable to focus on frontline crime.

Despite the Government recruiting 20,000 additional police in the past three years, the number dedicated to neighbourhood policing is 10 per cent lower than in 2012.

The Lib Dems are calling for a return to ‘proper community policing’, with officers focused on tackling crimes such as car theft. 

The party’s home affairs spokesman Alistair Carmichael said: ‘It’s little wonder that car theft is on the rise, given the fact that thieves can operate with virtually no consequences.’

A Home Office spokesman said: ‘Vehicle crime is down 39 per cent since 2010.’

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