High gas prices leading to increased thefts - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

High gas prices leading to increased thefts

The price of gasoline is less than a dime away from last year's record and with those climbing gas numbers comes an increase in drive-offs. The price of gasoline is less than a dime away from last year's record and with those climbing gas numbers comes an increase in drive-offs.

(WMC-TV) – The price of gasoline is less than a dime away from last year's record and with those climbing gas numbers comes an increase in drive-offs.

AAA shows the nationwide average at $3.89 a gallon for regular gas. In Memphis it's $3.71.

One Mid-South gas station doesn't have much of a problem with drive-offs because most customers have to pre-pay before filling up.

"My regulars know to wave at me. That way, we'll turn on the pumps. We know they're coming in" said Shelly Methana, gas station manager. "If we do not recognize you and cannot see the tag on your car, we will not turn on the pump. You'll have to come in and pre-pay."

Mathena says the pre-pay policy was loosely enforced in the past, but the decision to crack down came at the beginning of the year.

Jonesboro police have reported 50 drive-offs since January.

They say now they're looking to prevent crime by advising business owners to use common sense.

"There's very few other places that you can go and receive a product and not have to pay for it before you get to use it," said Mathena.

Now, thanks to common sense, Mathena says fewer people are able to drive off without paying.

"I write down vehicles and tag numbers all day long, just in case," she said.

Copyright 2012 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly