Chapter 1. Reports Of Stolen Vehicles of California Vehicle Code >> Division 4. >> Chapter 1.
(a) Every peace officer, upon receiving a report based on
reliable information that any vehicle registered under this code has
been stolen, taken, or driven in violation of Section 10851, or that
a leased or rented vehicle has not been returned within five days
after its owner has made written demand for its return, by certified
or registered mail, following the expiration of the lease or rental
agreement, or that license plates for any vehicle have been lost or
stolen, shall, immediately after receiving that information, report
the information to the Department of Justice Stolen Vehicle System.
An officer, upon receiving information of the recovery of any vehicle
described in this subdivision, or of the recovery of plates which
have been previously reported as lost or stolen, shall immediately
report the fact of the recovery to the Department of Justice Stolen
Vehicle System. At the same time, the recovering officer shall advise
the Department of Justice Stolen Vehicle System and the original
reporting police agency of the location and condition of the vehicle
or license plates recovered. The original reporting police agency,
upon receipt of the information from the recovering officer, shall,
immediately attempt to notify the reporting party by telephone, if
the telephone number of the reporting party is available or readily
accessible, of the location and condition of the recovered vehicle.
If the reporting party's telephone number is unknown, or notification
attempts were unsuccessful, the original reporting police agency
shall notify the reporting party by placing, in the mail, a notice
providing the location and condition of the recovered vehicle. This
written notice shall be mailed within 24 hours of the original
reporting police agency's receipt of the information of the recovery
of the vehicle, excluding holidays and weekends.
(b) If the recovered vehicle is subject to parking or storage
charges, Section 10652.5 applies.
(a) It is unlawful for any person to make or file a false or
fraudulent report of theft of a vehicle required to be registered
under this code with any law enforcement agency with intent to
(b) If a person has been previously convicted of a violation of
subdivision (a), he or she is punishable by imprisonment pursuant to
subdivision (h) of Section 1170 of the Penal Code for 16 months, or
two or three years, or in a county jail for not to exceed one year.
(a) The owner or legal owner of a vehicle registered under
this code which has been stolen or embezzled may notify the
Department of the California Highway Patrol of the theft or
embezzlement, but in the event of an embezzlement other than an
embezzlement as specified in Section 10855, may make the report only
after having procured the issuance of a warrant for the arrest of the
person charged with the embezzlement.
(b) Every owner or legal owner who has given any notice under
subdivision (a) shall notify the Department of the California Highway
Patrol of a recovery of the vehicle.
The Department of Justice upon receiving notice under this
chapter that a vehicle has been stolen, or taken or driven in
violation of Section 10851, or that a vehicle reported stolen, or
taken or driven in violation of Section 10851 has been recovered,
shall notify the Department of Motor Vehicles of the reported theft,
taking or driving, or recovery.
The department upon receiving a report of a stolen vehicle,
or of a vehicle taken or driven in violation of Section 10851, shall
place an appropriate notice in the electronic file system which will
identify such vehicles during the processing of new certificates of
registration, ownership, or registration and ownership. When such
vehicles are thus identified, processing shall be discontinued and
the Department of Justice shall be notified. New certificates shall
not be issued until cleared by the Department of Justice. Notices
shall remain in the Department of Motor Vehicles system until a
Department of Justice deletion is received.
A report of a stolen vehicle, or of a vehicle taken or driven in
violation of Section 10851, is effective for a period of not less
than one year from the date first reported or longer as the
department may determine.
Upon the transfer of registration of a vehicle reported as
stolen or embezzled, the department shall immediately notify the
reporting agency of such fact.