Earlier this month, law enforcement officials from Bettendorf, Moline, Rock Island, Rock Island County and Scott County held a press conference to initiate the Lock It Up Initiative. The goal of the campaign was to encourage Quad Citians to lock their vehicles in response to a marked increase of vehicle thefts in the area.

Police are now working to reinforce that message.

Our news partner WQAD reports that the number of stolen vehicles has reached almost 800 over the past 12 months, 250 this year alone. That's works out to an average of two vehicles a day.

I made the mistake of leaving my car running on a cold day once. As with most folks, I was "just going to be a minute." Sure enough, two punks looking to get from one place to another jumped into my running 1971 Pinto (yeah, I owned a Pinto. No, it never blew up.) Police found my vehicle within an hour, abandoned, but intact, and unharmed.

I learned my lesson years ago, and I still lock my vehicle at ALL times, running or not.  You should too.

- Craig