STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Do you want to get your car windows etched for free?
The 121st Police Precinct in Graniteville will offer free etching next Friday afternoon to inscribe residents’ Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN) into the windows of their vehicles.
Car thieves typically remove the VIN so that a car cannot be traced, but etching it means the windows would have to be replaced in order for a stolen car to be sold.
The NYPD calls VIN etching “a strong deterrent to thieves.”
Auto thefts on Staten Island have sharply risen during recent months, the Advance/SILive.com previously reported.
So far this year there have been 169 grand larceny auto incidents reported to the NYPD representing a 35% increase since last year during the same period when 125 incidents were reported, according to the NYPD CompStat.
The free etching event will be held in the parking lot of the International Christian Center Church located at 1501 Richmond Ave. from 4:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., the 121st Precinct said in a tweet.
During Friday’s event, residents can also sign up for Operation ID, an NYPD initiative that the agency says helps protect New Yorkers’ personal property.
The serial numbers of electronic devices are recorded in an NYPD database, and if stolen police say they can often recover the item “through the recorded serial numbers or through activating locator software built into the device.”
“If any of the registered items are stolen, police are often able to recover the devices through the recorded serial numbers or through activating locator software built into the device,” according to the NYPD.