LBPD Offers Tips To Help You Avoid Becoming A Victim of Auto Theft

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LBPD Offers Tips To Help Avoid Becoming A Victim of Auto TheftWith the holiday shopping season quickly approaching, there will be more opportunities for thieves to do their own window-shopping as they peruse the windows of parked cars for valuables to steal. Residents are reminded to take precautions to reduce the chance of becoming a victim of auto burglary.

In many cases the victim unknowingly makes the burglar’s job very easy. Commonly stolen items include purses, wallets, mail, and electronics such as cell phones, MP3 players, laptops, and GPS devices, and the items are often left in plain view. If the car door isn’t left unlocked, thieves often make entry by prying or smashing the vehicle’s window.

Auto burglary is a crime of opportunity, and often due to the prevalence of items left in cars, the ease in concealing the stolen items after the crime, and the increased demand for electronic goods on Internet sale and auction sites, it is the crime of choice among some criminals. Take the opportunity away from thieves who are out to steal your valuables by simply removing them from your vehicle, or securing them out of view.

The Long Beach Police Department strongly recommends that all residents consider the following preventative steps in order to decrease the chances of becoming a victim:

  • Secure your vehicle before leaving it – lock the doors, close the windows and sunroof, and never leave valuables in plain sight
  • Keep all packages, boxes, bags and valuables locked in the trunk, or take them with you
  • If you must leave valuables in the trunk, place them there before you arrive at your destination
  • If the trunk can be opened without a key from inside of your car, lock or disable this feature
  • Do not leave any connector cables (GPS, phone, MP3) or docking stations in plain sight as this may appear that you have electronics inside
  • Never leave loose change or jewelry in plain sight; sometimes that is enough to tempt a thief
  • Park in well-lighted areas when able
  • Be sure to activate your alarm system or consider installing one
  • Once home, unload your valuables immediately and do not store them in your car
  • If you have a garage use it, and keep it closed and locked

Your actions constitute the first line of defense on preventing this crime,

Always report suspicious activity to police right away, including people loitering near parked cars by calling 9-1-1, or the Long Beach Police Communications Center at (562) 435-6711.

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