Auto Burglaries

Burglar Staring into a Car

One crime you can really help us prevent is auto-burglary. Almost all auto-burglaries have one thing in common: something to steal. That is, something valuable left in the car, often in plain sight of a passing burglar. Many auto-burglaries are “crimes of opportunity”. These crimes can often be avoided if simple preventative steps are taken.

It takes less than 30 seconds to break into a car, grab what is in plain view, check the usual hiding places for other items, and get away. How long would it take you to secure your valuables out of sight? Even less time. Auto-burglary prevention, like all crime prevention, involves limiting the criminal’s ability and/or opportunity to commit the crime.

Common Trends

  • Most auto burglaries occur during hours of darkness
  • Most of the offenders gained entry into the vehicle through an unlocked door
  • Most offenders target vehicles that have valuable items left in plain sight, such as a purse, wallet, credit card, cell phone, and digital music players
  • Is it common for an offender to use a stolen credit card at gas stations and stores almost immediately after gaining possession of a credit card
  • It is common for an offender to remove a remote garage door opener from a vehicle in order to attempt to access the victim’s house at a later time

With very little time and effort, you can make a huge difference in your vulnerability to auto-burglary. We suggest taking these simple but important steps to avoid being a victim of auto burglary:

  • Do not leave doors unlocked.  Lock the doors when you are in or out of your vehicle!
  • Do not leave windows or sunroof open.
  • Do not leave valuables in plain view:
  • (GPS devices, lap tops, PDA’s, cell phones, MP3’s, wallets, purses)
  • Do not leave keys in the vehicle.
  • Do not leave the garage door opener in plain view.
  • Do not leave out items with personal information.
  • Do not move valuable items to the trunk while in public view.
  • Equip and arm your vehicle with an audible alarm system

Auto Burglary Can Lead to Other Crimes

  • Garage door openers, house keys or vehicle registrations left in your car can lead to identity theft and residential burglary.
  • Vehicle Registration – Photocopy your registration and black out the address. Keep the copy, not the original, in your car.
  • Mail – Do not leave outgoing or incoming mail in your car, especially where visible. This has your name and address on it.
  • Garage Door Opener – Avoid leaving this in your vehicle if possible.
  • Keys – Never leave keys in your car