Preventing Car Burglaries

April 18, 2008 8:43:37 PM PDT
A trend in car burglaries has Fresno Police taking steps to warn drivers who may be inviting car burglars to pick their car.These are the flyers police passed out Friday at apartment complexes and shopping centers in southeast Fresno and those who got them were lucky the warning was simply a friendly reminder instead of an unforgiving thief.

Fresno police are peeking and peering with good intentions helping you steer clear of thieves looking for easy targets. Warming temperatures signal the season, it doesn't take long for officers to find risk after risk. Loose change and small items you may overlook are often appealing to hot hands.

Todd Steinhardt, Fresno Police Department: "Something as simple as groceries on the seat there. If they'd just take the time to just throw them in the trunk. No one would be able to see them. It's real easy to pop a window here, reach in and grab them and be on your way in a matter of seconds."

Most "would- be" victims appreciated the friendly reminder.

Carol Owens, Fresno Resident: "I guess it's a good idea. I'm glad they let me know that I should be taking care of that. I should be putting them in the back, but they weren't very valuable anyway but still I wouldn't want anyone breaking in your car."

Fresno police say car burglaries are up 25 percent citywide. In southeast Fresno officers are averaging 70 cars broken into a month compared to the average of just 45 cars.

Mark Hudson, Fresno Police Department: "Some of the items we're seeing being taken in these vehicle burglaries are GPS's, their iPods, purses, we're seeing personal information being taken."

Mail, bank statements or paperwork with personal information is eye candy for those looking to not only steal from you but also rip off your identity.

Fresno police passed out a few hundred flyers and they plan to continue. As summer approaches officers say leaving your windows cracked is another concern, especially if there's anything appealing in plain view.


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