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Property Crime in the Foothills on Tuesday, 09/22/15 and Crime Prevention Tips of the Day

0 Robberies, 0 Commercial Burglaries

1 Stolen Vehicle: 12200-block of Woodland NE.

2 Residential Burglaries: 100-block of Monte Alto Place NE, 1000-block of Betts NE.

5 Auto Burglaries: Three at same location on 3100-block of Jane Place NE, 3300-block of Betts NE, 5700-block of Vista Bonita.

Crime Prevention Tips:  Our one stolen vehicle reported yesterday was a 23 year old vehicle.  Why would anyone steal a 23 year old vehicle that was already missing hub caps and a grill?  Because quite often, vehicle parts are worth more dollars to a criminal than the value of the vehicle if it was left intact.  This vehicle was probably stolen to be dismantled and the parts sold for a profit.  Besides parking in a secured garage, there are other ways to keep your vehicle from being stolen.  Do you absolutely have to park outside, overnight?  Then make sure you have locked the vehicle, think about an anti-theft device, park where you have ‘eyes on the vehicle’ and good sight lines to the vehicle in case someone is casing/tampering with it, check the lighting where you park (criminals do not want to be seen and then reported to police).  Another way to prevent auto theft is getting a VIN etching.  There is a VIN etching event coming up on Saturday, September 26th with APD Auto Theft detectives from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Home Depot on Eubank at Central NE.  The VIN etching is free; just bring your vehicle registration along with the vehicle.  You can wait inside your vehicle while the detectives etch the VIN number on the glass pieces of your vehicle; the process only takes a few minutes.  VIN etching prevents auto theft with the intent of dismantling the vehicle and selling the parts through a ‘chop shop.’ VIN etching also helps law enforcement identify a stolen vehicle.   If you haven’t had your vehicle VIN-etched, I recommend you do so.

Our two residential burglaries yesterday were entries via the front door and at the other home, entry by breaking a back window to the home to make entry.  Our community needs neighbors to serve as ‘extra eyes on the block’ and call 242-COPS from a safe place if you see strangers attempting to scale or get over fences, gates, walls to backs of homes or tampering or kicking at front doors.

Auto burglars got away with:  a fully loaded 9 MM handgun, 3 clips and the gun case, a back pack, a briefcase and a laptop all left behind by owners in parked and unattended vehicles.  Please remember the safety of our law enforcement officers and innocent citizens — possibly YOUR family or neighbors — when you walk away from your vehicle and leave a firearm inside.  Along with the right to bear arms comes the responsibility for properly securing firearms.  That 9MM gun and ammo is now in the hands of a criminal.  We have had several guns stolen from unattended vehicles over the past several weeks.  All of our auto burglaries yesterday were reported before noon, leading me to believe the crimes occurred while vehicles were parked outside overnight and the crimes were discovered the next day.  Please properly secure your firearms for our entire community’s safety.

Jill Garcia, Crime Prevention Specialist / ICPS, APD – Foothills Area Command