Thieves Target Gas Tanks in Loudoun County

Parked cars preyed on by thieves

Wednesday, Mar 7, 2012  |  Updated 1:00 PM EDT
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Police in northern Virginia are seeing more thefts of gas from car tanks as prices at the pump go up. News4's Shomari Stone reports from northern Virginia.

Shomari Stone

Police in northern Virginia are seeing more thefts of gas from car tanks as prices at the pump go up. News4's Shomari Stone reports from northern Virginia.

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Some Loudoun County residents have had their gas tanks targeted in a developing new crime pattern.

Police say thieves are stealing gas straight out of parked cars.  Several county residents who filled up the night before reported waking up to find their tanks empty.

Jay Leeson, a South Riding resident, told News4's Shomari Stone he bought gas this past weekend, drove home and parked in the driveway. A day later, his tank was on empty.  "It's unpleasant of course," he said.

The Loudoun County Sheriff's office said a similar crime was reported in Chantilly.

There are measures drivers can take to protect their tanks. Police recommend residents buy a locked gas cap that can be found at most auto parts stores.

Although the price of gas dropped for the first time in almost a month, experts do predict it will climb back up. Taking small steps to prevent someone from siphoning your gas can help you save big.

Leeson suspects crimes like these could become a a growing trend.  "With the price of gas going up, I guess it's going to be becoming more common," he said.

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