Western Colorado Auto Theft Task Force
The Western Colorado Auto Theft Task Force (WCATT) was formed in early 2010 through a grant that was received from the Colorado Auto Theft Protection Authority. WCATT is a multi jurisdictional, part time task force made up of officers from the Grand Junction Police Department, Colorado State Patrol, Mesa County Sheriff’s Department, Fruita Police Department and the Mesa County District Attorney’s Office.
WCATT was formed for the purpose of reducing auto theft within Mesa County, as well as outlying jurisdictions by working proactive operations focused on auto thefts, as well as supporting the prosecution of auto theft defendants. WCATT provides training to law enforcement officers from across the Western Slope of Colorado. The task force also provides prevention training to citizens to make them less attractive targets for criminals.
Less than two years since it was first put into operation in Mesa County, WCATT received statewide recognition for its efforts. In September 2011 the Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority awarded WCATT the Team Achievement Award, choosing it above all other task forces in the state.
During the first six months of 2011 there were more than 100 auto thefts reported in the WCATT region. WCATT was directly involved with the recovery of 17 of those vehicles, with a total estimated value of those recoveries at about $159,000. The task force is also credited with 12 felony arrests through June 2011 related to auto theft.