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Thieves are draining C.O. cars of gas: Are locking gas caps the answer?

(Update: Adding video, comments from DCSO, Phil's Trail cyclists, runner)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Even though gas prices have eased somewhat from record highs, gas siphoning is still becoming an issue. Deschutes County Sheriff's Office Sergeant Jayson Janes said it happens at trailheads, as well as people's properties.

A conversation on social media highlights the problem some are having with people stealing gas from their vehicles while parked at trailheads. One post stated their truck was drained at Phil's Trailhead. 

Another group member commented that it happened to them last year at Green Gate, and recommends a locked gas cap.

I spoke Thursday with some cyclists who were talking about the Facebook post. 

"It's just unfortunate and too bad that people have to behave that way," Ben McLeod of Bend said. 

Nikki McLeod added, "I think the Bend community, and certainly the trail riding community is tight -- that's not our culture here. "

I also spoke to a runner who asked to not be on camera. She often runs Phil's Trail with her dog. 

Bend resident Jessica Fraley said if her gas was stolen, "I probably would have to call someone to pick me up. I'd be pretty upset." 

Four gas siphoning cases have been reported so far this year in Deschutes County's patrol area, outside the incorporated cities.

There were three reports of gas siphoning in 2021, and in 2020, there were seven. 

Janes explained how to keep your car safe. 

"If you're in a public place, just park in an area that's populated where your vehicle is pretty visible," he said. "It would be pretty obvious to see if someone was tampering with your vehicle." 

He also said if your car sits parked at your house for a while, make sure in a spot that's not hidden. 

Article Topic Follows: Crime And Courts
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Kelsey McGee

Kelsey McGee is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Kelsey here.

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