WKYT INVESTIGATES: Theft of car in Lexington could be linked to viral TikTok trend

WKYT INVESTIGATES: Theft of car in Lexington could be linked to viral TikTok trend
Published: Aug. 2, 2023 at 11:49 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - A vehicle was stolen from a Lexington Hyundai owner Wednesday morning, and it could be linked to a viral TikTok trend.

“I came out at about 4:30, and the car was gone. I contacted the police, police showed up. They told me they recovered the vehicle. However, it was in an accident and the assailant took off running down Laredo Drive,” said James Knighten.

Knighten says the vehicle stolen was his son’s Hyundai.

Just a few months ago, WKYT reported that, according to Lexington police, around 30 vehicles were stolen in the month of March, saying those vehicles were mostly Hyundais and Kias.

“When my son and I purchased this vehicle, he was very adamant that he didn’t want one based upon the fact that they’re easy to steal, but, you know, we took a chance, I didn’t think nobody would steal this,” said Knighten.

The TikTok trend shows a flaw in newer models of these cars, making them easier to steal.

With the investigation still ongoing, Lexington police have not determined if the TikTok trend is the reason for this theft. Regardless, Knighten says the trend itself is enough to make him never buy this brand of vehicle again.

“I’m thinking we’re going to have to stay away from these brands for just a minute,” said Knighten. “Hopefully, they can get it together and make it theft-proof.”

About three months ago, Hyundai and Kia responded to news of the thefts. Leaders with the companies said they were distributing software to fix the problem at a much faster rate.

Hyundai said it was completing 6,000 installations a day. The Associated Press has previously reported the thefts were growing, despite company efforts. Deveral cities have sued the car companies. New York City sued in June.