Police Warn of Increase in Thefts of Truck Tailgates

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A simple hose clamp or tailgate lock can be a theft deterrent.

A simple hose clamp or tailgate lock can be a theft deterrent.

The Long Beach Police Department has seen an increase in truck tailgate thefts since the beginning of the year and is hoping that by increasing the community’s awareness, it may help prevent additional loss.

Tailgates are being stolen at an alarming rate throughout the United States. The reason for the thefts is that a tailgate replacement can cost up to $3,000.00, creating a high demand for tailgates on the black market.

Tailgates are designed to be removed easily by the owner, making it just as easy for thieves to remove them. The most popular trucks being targeted are Fords, Toyotas, Dodges and Chevrolets, and those equipped with rear back-up cameras are especially being targeted due to their value. Most tailgates are not labeled with identification numbers, making it almost impossible to determine the owner if recovered by police.

The Long Beach Police Department’s Auto Theft Detail suggests practicing the following safety tips to help secure your tailgate, or assist in its return to you if found:

  • attaching a simple hose clamp or tailgate lock around the pivot point of the tailgate, which may protect the tailgate from theft or serve as a deterrent (available for purchase at some auto part stores or online)
  • secure your vehicle in your garage if possible
  • when able, park your truck in a position that prevents the tailgate from being opened
  • mark the tailgate with the owner’s driver’s license number or vehicle license plate number, which will help law enforcement identify the owner if the gate is recovered during a police investigation

If you have had a tailgate stolen that you have not reported to police, please contact our Business Desk at (562) 570-7260 and a report can be taken over the phone. Anyone with information regarding the thefts should contact the Auto Theft Detail at (562) 570-7272.

To see just how easily and quickly a tailgate can be removed, click on the below news clip video link:

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