Maine thieves target vehicle inspection stickers

Posted April 07, 2009, at 10:58 a.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — Thieves in Maine’s largest city are stealing vehicle inspection stickers right off the windshield.

Portland police say they are investigating at least 35 reports of stolen stickers in recent months.

Lt. Tony Ward told the Portland Press Herald that the thieves typically smash a side window to gain entry. They then use a hand-held blowtorch to heat up the windshield to loosen the sticker’s glue and free the sticker from the glass.

It costs $18 for a vehicle inspection, and officials speculate that thieves are selling the stickers at a premium to people who are unable to get legitimate stickers without spending hundreds or thousands of dollars in repairs on their vehicles.

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