The Manassas City Police Department, in conjunction with the Prince William County Police Department and the Virginia State Police’s H.E.A.T. Program, will be hosting a free vehicle identification number (VIN) etching event at the Liberia Avenue Walmart Saturday.
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 9401 Liberia Ave. in Manassas, motorists can have a vehicle’s VIN engraved on its windows via a chemical solution. The total process takes about 15 minutes, the police department said.
“Once the VIN has been etched on all the windows, a thief must strip and replace every piece of glass in order to profit off the sale of the stolen vehicle or its parts,” said a release from the City of Manassas Police Department. “Doing so is a time-consuming and expensive feat, which deters many thieves from stealing VIN-etched vehicles in the first place.”
According to the Virginia Uniform Crime Reporting Program, 76 percent of all motor vehicle thefts reported in Virginia occur in the Tidewater, Richmond, Northern Virginia areas of the Commonwealth.
“Manassas City witnessed its highest number of motor vehicle thefts in recent history when the number reached 177 in 1998,” said the release. “Since then, vehicle and motorcycle thefts in the City have decreased steadily, down to 69 thefts in the year 2011. This reduction can be attributed largely to theft prevention measures that are available to motorists, such as VIN Etching.”