OLATHE, Kan. — Six juveniles were arrested early Monday morning in connection to multiple vehicle thefts in the Kansas City area.

The Olathe Police Department said officers were conducting route patrols in the area of West Virginia Lane and Parker Street when they heard squealing car tires.

Officers located a 2020 Kia Optima with several people running on foot from the vehicle.

Police said the Kia was reported stolen out of Kansas City, Missouri.

“Stealing a car is felony theft no matter how you look at it,” Olathe Police Sgt. Joel Yeldell said. “The value of those vehicles will always be a felony amount.”

The initial investigation ended with six juvenile arrests and the recovery of a second vehicle, a 2017 Hyundai Sonata that was reported stolen out of Overland Park, according to police.

“Anywhere these vehicles are, no matter what the city is, is where we’re seeing these cases,” Yeldell said.

He recommends keeping your Kia or Hyundai in the garage if you can. Yeldell also suggested calling your local dealership. There are some software upgrades available. However, some drivers are still seeing thefts after the upgrade.

Some police departments are also offering anti-theft devices — like steering wheel locks — to deter thefts. Kansas City police already offers them for free for certain Kia and Hyundai owners, and Olathe police hope to have them soon.

“Someone stealing a car, they want an easy in and out,” Yeldell said. “Certainly a club or steering lock device is a preventative measure that will help deter that.”

Meantime, the two alleged thefts that the teens were arrested for remain under investigation at this time.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Olathe Police Department at 913-971-6363 or the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-8477.