UK car thefts soar by 56 per cent. Car theft rates in England and Wales rose by 56 per cent last year according to the latest data from Office of National Statistics (ONS). Some 89,000 vehicles were stolen in 2017, up from 56,000 the previous year, and the worst year on record since 2012. Attempted vehicle thefts were also up, rising from 153,000 in 2016 to 196,000 last year, while incidents of items being stolen from cars went up from 796,000 in 2016 to 929,000 last year – a 17 per cent increase. The number of police officers in England and Wales has fallen by 16 per cent since 2009.