Illinois State Police say they found a West Englewood woman’s stolen Kia, but they haven’t been told


CHICAGO (CBS) – Mrs. Juanita Blalock’s car was stolen outside her home in West Englewood last Sunday after she returned from church.

We told you his story on Thursday. She was one of hundreds of Kia and Hyundai drivers victimized by a spike in car thefts in Cook County and beyond this summer.

CBS 2’s Tara Molina happened to get a call after our story aired on Thursday. Turns out Illinois State Police found the 2020 Kia Sportage earlier this week – but no one called Blalock.

So how did it go and when will Blalock be able to get her car back? Molina has been asking since last night.

Molina is also the one who called Blalock to let him know his car had been found — since we at CBS 2 were notified after his story aired.

Blalock had not heard from the Illinois State Police, nor from the Chicago police – who took his theft report.

“I’m so – I’m disgusted,” Blalock said. “I get all these phone calls. They say they got my car – the state police. Then the state police just called and said they didn’t have it.”

Where did the police take the car when they found it? Blalock doesn’t know, and she says she’s exhausted.

Blalock spoke to us twice from the walk outside his home in West Englewood this week – once about his car being stolen, and on Friday because that car was found earlier in the week – and no one called for him talk about.

It’s particularly frustrating, as Blalock has been back and forth with her insurance and rental car companies – thinking her car was missing while in police custody.

We reached the Illinois State Police – who Blalock was told she had found her car and took it – and the Chicago Police – who again took her report from flight.

We know that when it comes to flying, Blalock isn’t alone.

We learned from July 1 through August 10 that 642 Kias and Hyundais were stolen in Cook County. Last year there were only 74.

This represents an increase of 767%.

The bar chart below shows the trend this year versus last year going back to January.

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But when it comes to getting answers – finding Blalock’s car and finding out what condition it’s in – Blalock says so far, she just got runaway.

“Thank you for coming back today. Maybe they’ll do something,” Blalock said. “It’s just hard for me. I can’t go on too long. I can’t sleep. So why did everyone know about the car, but not me?”

We learned Friday afternoon that Blalock had been informed that her car could not be driven. Chopper 2 was able to locate the car in a tow yard in Cicero, where it has been held for days.

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Blalock is working with his insurance company on next steps.

Meanwhile, when it comes to the biggest car theft problem, the Cook County Sheriff’s Office has advised owners of Kia and Hyundai vehicles to take steps such as installing after-market immobilizers. secondary – or kill switches – that render a car inoperable without a separate key. Car alarms with motion detection, steering wheel locks and vehicle tracking systems are also advisable.

The sheriff’s office has also asked Kia and Hyundai owners to complete a consent form on their website that allows law enforcement to gain cooperation from automakers to track stolen cars more quickly. Car owners who sign the consent form can also get a sticker to put on their car warning potential thieves that the car is being followed by investigators.

The stickers are also available at all Cook County courthouses.

The National Insurance Crime Bureau reported that it was aware of an increase in thefts of Kias and Hyundais nationwide since 2019. The organization noted that vehicle crimes, carjackings and thefts catalytic converters are approaching record levels, and nearly one million vehicles were stolen last year alone.

The bureau had no Illinois-specific information on Kia and Hyundai flights, but they did have information on our neighbors to the north. In Wisconsin, the NICB’s 2021 Hot Wheels report said seven of the 10 most stolen vehicles were Kias and Hyundais.


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