[In the video above Cleveland police provide an update.]
(WJW) – Cleveland city leaders announced Wednesday they will file a lawsuit against two vehicle manufacturers, Hyundai and Kia, due to the growing number of vehicles being stolen in the city.
The vehicles made by the manufacturers have become targets of recent thefts nationwide after a TikTok challenge highlighted the vehicle’s lack of an immobilizer.
“This is about industry accountability, not just for car manufacturers that fail to install the proper technology but industry accountability for gun manufacturers as well in this country,” said Mayor Justin Bibb. “So we want to use every tool in our arsenal to make sure we hold industry accountable to protect our residents.”
City leaders say the increase in thefts has cost the city more resources to respond and investigate.
“We’ve estimated already that we’ve spent thousands of police hours simply tracking down these stolen Kias and stolen Hyundais and that’s a real drain on police resources that we want to use to fight crime,” said one city official.
In addition, Mayor Justin Bibb said there is a link between stolen vehicles and violent crime in the city. (Hear his explanation in the video below.)
Both Kia and Hyundai are rolling out software updates to help prevent auto thefts.
By filing this suit, the city joins a growing list of other municipalities including Columbus.