The Wiles of the Automobile Thief
��TlllvRl-^ Ls a department in llu' liureau of New York police which does nothing all the year around but round up automobile thie\es. W hen an automobile is stolen, the case is immediately referred to the "Stolen Automobile Squad."
The professional automobile thief has the air and appearance of a polished gentleman. He is of the resourceful "Raffles" type. He dresses perfectly, and hi:- coni-
��If the ignition system is locked the thieves quickly in- stall one of their own temporarily
���niand of luiglisli is great enough to deceive (he most suspicious of polici'men. His ingenuity seems to be l)oundiess.
It may be that an automobile tliii-i has stolen a car under your \ery nose! He is the last man you would suspect. He appnjaches an empty automobile,
��Sometimes the empty automobile is sim- ply hitched to a truck and towed away
Such olistacles as chain-locks arc in- consequential trifles to the professional thief. He simply cuts them with nippers
climbs in wiih careless case, starts
the engine and drives away. When
he is two or three blocks away, his
confederates will climb in, and the car
will be driven hastih' into some deserted
The first step is to disguise the car. Name-plates, usually from another state, •ire liastiK' clamped o\er the original plates. The hood is lifted, the serial numbiT of the engiiu- is likil or grouinl away, and new numbers an- stamped in their |)lace. The numbered pl.Ue on the running-board is remo\'ed and anotiier substituted. Imiiedinienla, such as mir-