Video: Car Burglaries on Rise in Columbus
COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) — We’ve all done it before, leaving valuable personal items in plain sight in the car while we make a quick run into a store. We never think we will be the victim of a car burglary. Now that car thefts have picked up this summer, law enforcement is urging us to be more mindful and to take cautionary measures.
“Ten seconds, fifteen seconds, they can open the door, take something valuable, shut the door and leave. Sometimes it may take you a while to realize it’s gone,” Capt. Brent Swan with the Columbus Police Department said.
Columbus Police Department (CPD) has reported an increase in car burglaries this summer. In the last week alone, ten drivers say they’ve been burglarized. Hot items include cell phones, laptops and car stereos, leading investigators to believe juveniles may be responsible.
“A lot of times, they will be sold on the street. They are swapped between individuals. Sometimes they are even carried home, and their children may end up playing with them,” Swan said.
There are preventative measures you can take, such as parking in well-lit areas and putting valuable items in the trunk.
“Just be considerate that someone can easily walk down that sidewalk and look inside your vehicle, especially if your windows are down and your doors are unlocked. They can open that door, reach in and take an item that’s valuable and leave,” Swan said.
Nadia Dale of Columbus says she is a victim of this recent rash of crimes. She says the culprits ransacked her car and stole both her work bag and her sense of safety.
“It’s kind of a scary feeling. It’s a scary feeling to know that while you’re resting, they are going through your precious goods,” Dale said.
It’s also important to pay attention to your surroundings. Reporting suspicious activity could prevent someone else from becoming a victim.
If you are a victim of a car burglary, or have witnessed a crime in action, law enforcement urges you to contact Crime Stoppers.