Car Thieves Look for Open Invitation

Breaks in go up in Summer months

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Car thieves will break your window for just about anything.

    "I guarantee those would bring good money on Craig's List," said Steve Witte with the Regional Auto Theft Task Force after finding a pair of golf clubs in an SUV. 

    Car Thieves Look for Open Invitation

    [DGO] Car Thieves Look for Open Invitation
    Car thieves will break your window for just about anything. (Published Thursday, May 20, 2010)

    Witte said that car break-ins can spike in the summer because warmer weather and longer days translate into people spending more time in their cars and leaving more valuables for the bad guys. 

    "The window was broken and my purse was gone," Jezreel Lopez said while looking for personal belongings at the Chula Vista Police Department.

    The department collected more than 150 unclaimed items -- everything from laptop computers to tools -- and invited victims to peruse them to see if their belongings were in the collection.

    "I've been looking through everything, and there is nothing here," Dori Anderson said. 

    Anderson said that it's a terrible experience to come out and find out that your car was broken into.

    "You kind of feel violated, and you walk around in a fog a little bit," Anderson said.

    Steve Witte with the Auto Theft Task Force walked through a college parking lot this week, looking for examples of what drivers should not do -- and he found plenty.  One car had a high end racing bike in the back seat, another had a purse on the floor of the driver's side. Each item could be quickly stolen by a thief.

    Witte said the key is to hide your valuables anyway you can. He said that it's preferable to keep them with you, or hide them in the truck. At a minimum, car owners should cover up possessions with a towel or blanket.