Cell phone robberies up by 40 per cent in Vancouver

It is a crime that is getting worse in Vancouver — cell phone robberies.

Compared to last year, cell phone robberies are up in Vancouver about 40 per cent, which has Vancouver Police Chief Jim Chu pushing for a system to prevent stolen cell phones from being resold.

“So that when a phone is stolen, it cannot be re-registered with another provider. We would like the airways of stolen cell phones to be blocked,” says Chu.

He notes it’s a system that has shown success in the United Kingdom. “They have experienced a 35 per cent drop in [cell phone] of robberies.”

Chu is also reminding people to be careful. “Sometimes when you are holding your cell phone in your hand, in certain circumstances, that’s like waving $500 cash.”

Police say while the crime is happening all over the place, transit hubs stand out due to an increase of crime.