On January 19, 2022, the Dallas Police Department Southwest Crime Reduction Team, South Central Crime Reduction Team, Speeding/Racing Task Force, Auto Theft Unit, Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV), and Homeland Security Investigations conducted a major interagency operation within the grid areas of the Southwest and South Central Patrol Divisions. The operation targeted individuals utilizing fake license plate paper tags. Vehicles using fictitious temporary license plates or improper temporary license plates, all referred to as eTags, are commonly used in crimes from auto thefts to homicides. The operation was intended to interdict these vehicles, investigate the reason for the fictitious license plate, tow vehicles when applicable, and arrest the offender if needed.
Officers targeted multiple types of eTags such as those that were expired to those that were fraudulently obtained. Officers also recovered illegitimate fake dealerships etags that are registered with Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV).
This collaborative effort between multiple units/agencies allowed a high level of enforcement and provided immediate resources on site. The Dallas Police Department’s Auto Theft Unit inspected vehicles believed to be stolen, Homeland Security Investigations assisted officers in identifying persons by using mobile fingerprint scanners, and the TxDMV provided support on eTag research.
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