Stolen Car Tracking System Goes on Line

An anti-theft system that uses radio signals to lead police to stolen cars went on line Tuesday in Los Angeles County.

The Stolen Vehicle Recovery Network's key component is a homing device, manufactured by the Massachusetts-based electronics firm LoJack. The system costs about $595 for a private citizen to install. When a LoJack-equipped car is reported stolen, police enter the report into the state's stolen vehicle system computer, which sends a radio signal from one of seven transmission towers throughout the county.

All but two police departments--Culver City and Long Beach--have joined the 47-agency recovery network.

The California Highway Patrol is coordinating the three-year pilot program, which was unveiled at a news conference attended by county Sheriff's Department and Los Angeles police officials.

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