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Auto Burglary & Theft Prevention Authority

The Auto Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority (ABTPA) has fostered a statewide cooperative network of law enforcement groups, prosecutors, insurance industry representatives, local tax assessor-collectors, and concerned citizens to combat vehicle theft and burglary through enforcement, prevention, public information, and education initiatives. In addition to providing guidance and oversight, ABTPA awards financial grants to agencies, organizations, and concerned parties in an effort to raise public awareness of vehicle theft and burglary and implement education and prevention initiatives.

Background

Established by the 72nd Texas Legislature in 1991, the Texas Automobile Theft Prevention Authority (ATPA) became the first statewide effort to reduce auto theft. The 80th Legislature amended the ATPA mission in House Bill 1887 to also emphasize reducing vehicle burglaries. The resulting agency, the Texas Auto Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority (ABTPA), is charged with assessing automobile burglary, theft, and economic theft (burglary or theft committed for financial gain) in Texas, analyzing the methods and providing financial support to combat the problems. In 2009, the ABTPA became part of the newly established Texas Department of Motor Vehicles.

ABTPA Grantees

Introduction to ABTPA

Educational Programs

  • ABTPA’s Grantees provides the following services at various events across Texas:
    • Presentations
    • VIN etching
    • Conference booths
    • News articles
    • And more.
    Contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information and to request participation in an upcoming event.

Board of
Directors

The Governor of Texas appoints six individuals to serve staggered six-year terms on the board of directors.

Board members include:

  • Two law enforcement representatives
  • Two consumer representatives
  • Two insurance representatives
  • The executive director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, who serves ex-officio.

 

ABTPA Board of Directors
Tommy HansenLT Tommy Hansen
Hitchcock
Board Chair
Law Enforcement Representative

linda kinneyLinda Kinney
Dripping Springs
Board Member
Consumer Representative

placeholderSteven C. McCraw
c/o Major Justin Owen ex-officio
Board Member
Texas Dept. of Public Safety

Phillip GausePhillip Shay Gause
San Antonio
Board Member
Insurance Representative

ashley hunterAshley Hunter
Austin
Board Member
Insurance Representative

Armin MizaniArmin Mizani
Keller
Board Member
Consumer Representative

Miguel “Mike” RodriguezDeputy Chief Miguel “Mike” Rodriguez
Laredo
Board Member
Law Enforcement Representative

Calendar

FY19 Calendar of Events and Deadlines
Event Date Location
Board Meeting January 10, 2019 9 a.m. Lone Star Room, Bldg. 1
Texas Dept. of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin, TX.

Agenda

Materials

Transcript

Legal Overview

FY18 Calendar of Events and Deadlines
Event Date Location
Board Meeting May 23, 2018 8 a.m. Lone Star Room, Bldg. 1
Texas Dept. of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin, TX.

Agenda

Materials

Transcript

Board Meeting November 14, 2017 8 a.m. Lone Star Room, Bldg. 1
Texas Dept. of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin, TX.

Agenda

Materials

Transcript

FY17 Calendar of Events and Deadlines
Event/Deadline Date Location
August

Strategic Communications Training

15th
Time TBA
Crowne Plaza Austin
6121 North IH 35
Austin, TX
July

Grants, Budget and Reports Committee Meeting

Agenda

 

6th
4:00 p.m.
Texas Dept. of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin, TX.

Board Meeting

Agenda

Materials

Supplement

Transcript

7th
9:00 a.m.
Texas Dept. of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin, TX.
June

Grants, Budget, and Reports Committee Workshop
Agenda

21st
9:00 a.m.
Texas Dept. of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin, TX.
January

Board Meeting
Agenda

Materials

Transcript

18th Texas Dept.of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin, TX
October

Board Meeting
Agenda

Materials

Transcript

12th Texas Dept. of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Avenue, Austin

 

Avoid "Puffing"

Avoid Puffing

The Texas Automobile Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority is reminding motorists to avoid leaving their running vehicles unattended.

As the temperatures around the state drop, many motorists may leave their vehicles unattended as they try to warm-up the car. This provides an opportunity for thieves to steal vehicles. Many law enforcement agencies have referred to the phenomena as “Puffing.”

The term puffing deals with the time of year it is done. Almost no one bothers to start their car before getting into it during our hot Texas summers. But that changes during the winter when the urge to warm your car up before you get into it is pretty tempting. In the cold air, your tail pipe “puffs” as it releases exhaust, which is where the term comes from. It may sound funny, but it’s serious business.

Puffing is serious for two reasons:

  • The environment: If you leave your engine running for 10-15 minutes, that is a lot of emissions released into the air and a lot of gas wasted.
  • Crime: If you are inside while your car engine is running outside, you’ve done a lot of work for the local car thief. How serious is this? Authorities in Amarillo reported 939 stolen automobiles in 2018: 819 of those cars had the keys in the vehicle and or the car was left running. Auto theft could have been reduced by 87% if everyone had taken their keys out of the vehicle or not left their vehicles “puffing,”

Leaving a vehicle unattended in some circumstances can be a ticketable offense. In Texas, the offense is a Class C misdemeanor.

Texas Transportation Code 545.404

5(a)  Except as provided by Subsection (b), an operator may not leave a vehicle unattended without:

  1.  Stopping the engine;
  2.  Locking the ignition;
  3.  Removing the key from the ignition;
  4.  Setting the parking brake effectively; and
  5.  If standing on a grade, turning the front wheels to the curb or side of the highway.

(b) The requirements of Subsections (a)(1), (2), and (3) do not apply to an operator who starts the engine of a vehicle by using a remote starter or other similar device that:

  1. Remotely starts the vehicle's engine without placing the key in the ignition; and
  2. Requires the key to be placed in the ignition or physically present in the vehicle before the vehicle can be operated.

More Information

For more information, please email the Automobile Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (512) 465-1485.

Copyright © 2019 Texas Department of Motor Vehicles. All rights reserved. - 4000 Jackson Ave, Austin, TX 78731