Is it that simple to lower crime in an area 25% or more?

Darren Boyer
Sep 18 · 3 min read

Did Lightcatch users really lower the vehicle theft rate in Red Deer 25% this year? Maybe they lowered it more than 25%!

The media recently reported auto thefts were down 41% in Red Deer Mar- June over 2019. Across Canada vehicle thefts were down only 15% in that period. That’s a 26% difference.

In Toronto, and in major cities across the US, vehicle thefts were actually UP during these peak pandemic months. Calgary, right next door to Red Deer, was about the national average but has since seen a rise in vehicle thefts in July and August.

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With just 1% or less of the population using Lightcatch this area saw many auto thefts quickly recovered.

Why did this happen?

Why was there such a dramatic reduction in auto thefts in Red Deer? It is the third largest city in the province with over 100,000 people along with several smaller towns close by. It was also the 10th highest crime city in Canada in 2019.

The most realistic explanation for these great improvements is that the count of Lightcatch users and their engagement grew enough it changed how criminals behave in that City.

Vehicle recoveries and high profile arrests on the app started to take place in this area in the late spring. By July, there were a few thousand people who got involved. Recoveries and arrests started coming in frequently. One time 5 vehicles were recovered in 9 days. Last week 3 stolen vehicles on the app in Red Deer were recovered within 24 hours.

Not every single one of these recoveries were 100% Lightcatch users. The RCMP working there deserve a huge portion of the credit. And there are people in that area who take the time to read what is put on social media and then put that information on the app. This helps show the public how much better the app is in getting results.

Since most of the Lightcatch success in his region has come after the reporting period of June 2020 the auto theft rate may be even lower than 41% year over year. I see supporting evidence to this in a couple ways. First the volume of thefts reported in Red Deer in Sept compared to June or July on the app is DOWN. Second, we see a real pick up in activity east and south of Red Deer. I’m guessing the bad actors that aren’t in jail are moving out of this City trying to find easier targets.


We’ve figured out how to reproduce these same results anywhere. This is the 3–4th region where we’ve seen the public make a real difference in preventing or stopping crime using our technology and process. If you live in an area where the crime rate should go down contact us right away.

We are just putting a repeatable program together to help train others in Canada how to get similar results. That program is something a City, a County, or even a determined volunteer group could implement. We probably could handle training 5–8 different regions this fall.

I got a feeling once Toronto, New York and LA realize they too could drop auto theft rates by 41% or more we could be real busy.


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