Police to public: Lock car doors, remove valuable items

July 20, 2013 • Local News

According to police statistics, between 51 and 74 percent of all vehicles hit by burglars are unlocked. Of a total of 135 vehicle burglaries reported between April 8 and July 15, only 26 percent were reported as locked, while 41 percent were reported as unlocked. Another 33 percent of all victims said they think they locked their vehicles, but could not say for sure. Notably, none of the latter vehicles revealed any signs of [auth] forced entry.

Richard Lucero, of Neighborhood Watch and Alarms and 22-year veteran of the Roswell Police Department, said that if a person doesn’t remember locking it or if there were no signs of forced entry, chances are it wasn’t locked.

“Most burglars work in pairs, with one driving down the street and the second walking and checking the doors of all vehicles. If they find one that is unlocked, they will take whatever is of value,” Lucero said.

“Only if they see something of particular value, like a wallet, a purse or a gun, will they attempt to get into an locked vehicle by breaking a window,” Lucero explained.

Nine guns were stolen during the burglaries. As a percent, seven percent, this figure does not sound impressive. However, Lucero said, “One gun stolen from a vehicle is one gun too many. It represents a gun that is now on the street as result of someone’s carelessness.”

Neigborhood Watch and the RPD urge people to remove all items of value from a vehicle. Every day, officers respond to multiple vehicle burglaries. Various articles are stolen, such as cell phones, purses, prescription medication, money and guns. RPD spokeswoman Sabrina Morales warned people that the burglar may sell the gun or could use it for something more sinister.

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