Four vehicles were either broken into or stolen on Carlton Ave last month.
A family of seven who lives on the street said their car was broken into and a beloved family truck was stolen.
Father Caleb Timmins said it left their five kids shaken up.
"They keep having nightmares about people breaking in and stealing their stuff," Caleb Timmins said.
Caleb's wife Sarah Timmins said all of their children had different mental complexities, and the stolen truck was their freedom.
"When things got really s**t, we could just hop into the truck and all go anywhere we wanted. It was our mental health outlet," she said.
"It let us have a break and bring us back to normality, but now they've stolen that from us."
The first break-in was on June 4, when the perpetrators broke into the family's car and the family truck.
Caleb Timmins said the door handle of the car had been taken off and the ignition destroyed.
"But then they probably realised they didn't have batteries, so they left," he said.
The couple had previously taken the batteries out of both vehicles to prevent them from getting stolen.
She said after reporting it to the police, they set up security lights and a camera and didn't think anything else would happen.
But then on June 21, the perpetrators came back with their own battery to put into the truck and then stole it.
"They knew exactly what they were doing," Sarah Timmins said.
"We work so hard for everything we have, to then have people just take it rips us all up."
On June 10, the Timmins' neighbour, who wanted to remain anonymous, also had her car stolen on Carlton Ave opposite the Timmins' house.
The woman said her car was parked on the road and stolen during the day. Her husband later found it at Molten Metals.
Once the car was released, the best financial option was to scrap the vehicle because of the damage caused by the theft, the woman said.
"Sure the car wasn't worth much money, but that's not the point. People are out there just helping themselves to other people's stuff.
"When you have something stolen from you, you feel violated."
The car belonging to a young man, who also did not want to be named, 50 metres from the Timmins' house, was broken into, also on June 10.
Whanganui Ruapehu police area prevention manager Detective Inspector Neil Forlong urged people to make it as hard as possible for someone to steal their vehicle.
"Always lock your car and take your keys and valuables out of it. Park it up your driveway or in your garage as opposed to on the road, and add deterrents like alarms and immobilisers," Forlong said.
"If you've got two cars side by side and one of them has a steering wheel lock and the other one hasn't, the one most likely to be broken into is the easiest one."
He said several years ago vehicle theft just about disappeared in Whanganui but had come back with vengeance in the past two to three years. The most commonly stolen cars were Nissans and Mazdas.
"We also know a lot of car crime in Manawatu Whanganui is committed by young people. They take a car, take it for a joy ride and then ditch them," Forlong said.
According to the Police Data website, there was a spike over February in "illegal use of a motor vehicle", defined as taking someone's vehicle without permission.
With 70 thefts, February had the highest number for the category since the data was first published in 2014.
The third highest was April with 56, and March was the fourth highest with 52.
The data only shows reports up to the end of April.
Forlong said people who see someone breaking into a car or acting suspiciously around it, should call 111.
"It's what it's there for.
"We want to know who the people are and what they're doing."
He said to report something that's already happened, call 105.