COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Colorado Springs police are warning people that they've seen a spike in car thefts this year and especially in recent months.
From January through September, police saw 1362 stolen cars, about 500 more than the 876 that they saw in the same period in 2011.
CSPD spokesperson Barbara Miller said officers have teamed up with the Colorado State Patrol to form a car theft task force.
"We are trying to be proactive and that's why the task force was created," said Miller. "On that task force there are five people right now and their total focus is trying to find who's responsible for stealing the vehicles."
Miller said, so far, police haven't established what the root of the problem might be or whether a car theft ring could be involved. She said officers have seen thefts all over Colorado Springs.
Earlier this week, KRDO Newschannel 13 showed you exclusive video of what happened when a couple noticed their stolen truck in the lane next to them, pulled the driver from the vehicle and eventually got the truck back.
Last Thursday, two Fort. Carson's soldiers truck was stolen as they were volunteering to give safe rides home to potential drunk drivers downtown. Their truck was later recovered.
Police said that, in the last two months alone, they've recovered 178 stolen cars.
Austin O'bryan is hoping police will be able to track down his red 1993 Honda Prelude that was stolen Thurday.
"It's total shock," said O'bryan. " I've never had anything stolen before. People consider their cars one of their most prized possessions. They put a lot of money into it, and to think of it gone is kind of appalling."
According to the FBI crime reports, car thefts in Colorado Springs went down significantly between 2005 and 2011. There were 1,779 thefts in 2005; 1,789 in 2006; 1,487 in 2007; 1,124 in 2008; 1,061 in 2009; 1,288 in 2010 and 1,168 in 2011.