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Car thieves add classics to their list of must have vehicles

Classics are easy to steal because they don't have anti-theft devices

It seems older Honda's aren't the only cars local thieves have their eyes on.

Classic cars are now a hot commodity. Muscle cars from the sixties have been stolen in recent weeks.

A 1967 Chevy Camaro RS two door sport couple was stolen in Dinuba. 66 Chevy Chevelle SS with a 396 under the hood was stolen in Visalia.

In north Fresno a 57 Chevy Bel Air was taken recently. Mick O'Neill is an investigator for Hagerty Insurance.

"You cannot leave it without eyes on it. I never recommend you can't have your eyes on the car."

O'Neill says car thieves don't have a conscience when it comes to your pride and joy. They're only in it for the money.

"The whole classic car field has become hugely popular so if you need parts a lot of those cars stolen have been chopped up. They're going to chop shops."

Once the car is parted out it becomes more difficult to trace. O'Neill says the recovery rate on collector cars is only ten percent.

Here are the top four classics sought after by thieves. The 1964 Chevy Impala SS is number one. Number two is the 69 Chevy Camaro Z-28.

67 Ford Mustang is number three and the fourth most wanted classic car wanted by thieves is the 68 Chevy Chevelle. All four are easy to steal.

"You can have a kill switch on it, you can have a club on it but a lot of these guys if they aren't gonna hot wire it, basically punch the ignition, start it up and take it away."

O'Neill recommends having a tracking device placed on the car. If it's stolen that signal can lead police to the bad guys before that classic is chopped up.

He says the theft of classic cars in the Central Valley is a multi-million dollar illegal business.


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