Tips for keeping your belongings safe

10 September 2014

Over the past month, area police have had reports of vehicles that were broken into during the day and evening hours in parking lots at area malls, restaurants and businesses.

In the majority of these cases, cars were left unlocked or windows were shattered to bypass the alarm systems and gain access to valuables that were left in open view on car seats. It is believed the perpetrator(s) act very quickly and gain access in minutes.

Although the police are investigating these cases, it is important to note that many of these types of crimes can be prevented if owners remember to remove personal property from their vehicles. By eliminating the opportunity for someone to target vehicles, you are less likely to become the victim of a vehicle break-in.
In an attempt to prevent crimes, you want to make your vehicle less of a target.

Here are some simple tips to help you protect your vehicle and your belongings.

  • Secure your vehicle by locking all doors and rolling up the windows.
  • Remove all stereo and related objects from your vehicle. (CD’s, portable CD player, MP3 player, etc)  If this is not possible make an attempt to hide them from view before reaching your destination.
  • Remove all personal property such as purses, wallets, cell phones, GPS units, even sunglasses. Hide them in your trunk before you reach your destination.
  • Do not leave packages in your vehicle, or other items that look as if they would contain items. Criminals often figure there are valuables in the packages.
  • Park in well lit areas with lots of traffic. Do not park between two larger vehicles as this makes it easier to break in without being noticed.
  • At home, leave your outside lights on, or install motion lights.
  • Do not leave your vehicle running or your keys in the vehicle unattended.
  • You may consider using an anti-theft device on your vehicle such as a car alarm. Keep in mind that these devices can sometimes be disabled.
  • Although it's strongly encouraged to leave valuables at home, if you do bring valuables to the Y make sure you lock them up. If you don't have a lock, complimentary key locks are available at the Member Services desk.

Please remember the importance of reporting any suspicious activity by calling 911. Don’t wait, call if you see or hear anything that appears to be “out of the ordinary.”