Lodinews.com

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

Behind the Badge Investigating local trends in auto thefts, break-ins

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Lt. Chris Piombo

Posted: Monday, November 14, 2011 12:00 am | Updated: 6:05 am, Mon Nov 14, 2011.

I realize the subject of auto burglaries probably doesn't do much for you as you hunch over your bowl of bran flakes or stack of flapjacks, or both, depending on your age and cholesterol level. But for those of us who have been a victim of this crime, this information shows we're not alone. And for those of you who have not heard the crunching sound as you stepped on a pile of broken window glass on the street next to your car as you head off to work one morning, here are some things that might help you avoid being a victim.

LPD crime analyst Dale Miller provides information on crime trends to our officers throughout the week. He sends out emails that alert us to where crime is occurring and who might be responsible for the misdeeds. I was looking over his auto burglary statistics for the past month and noticed some common themes.

There were 38 auto burglaries in the city of Lodi between Oct. 8 and Nov. 8. That's about one burglary per day in a city of over 60,000 residents. Pretty good. And that's the second-lowest monthly total for the past year. Pretty good times two.

Here are some shared factors I found among those 38 burglaries. Think about them as you decide where to park your car.

As expected, the vast majority of the burglaries occurred at night. Suspects mostly broke into cars parked on the street or in the driveway. Thirteen of the thefts occurred during the daylight hours. Sixteen break-ins occurred in shopping center, restaurant, or bank parking lots. Parking lots open to the public, with customers walking around pushing shopping carts. We often wonder how the thieves do it. Are they specters who materialize in our dimension for a nanosecond, bust your window, swipe your purse, then slither back into that parallel universe where Spock wears a moustache?

Speaking of purses, ladies, and men (it could be a European carry-all), this is just a reminder to take them with you or tuck them way, way out of view. This applies to briefcases and laptops, too. Purses or briefcases were ripped off in 10 of the 38 thefts. Six laptops were stolen as well. Nine out of 10 of the purses, briefcases or laptops were left in plain sight on the seat or floor.

GPS units and CD/DVD/Blu-ray players left on the dashboard or in view were also popular. Most disconcerting were the two handguns that were stolen during auto burglaries.

Some of the more unusual items taken included cigars, a lunchbox, a bag of magic markers, a man's suit, and a wedding ring.

How do the thieves get into the car, you ask? Well, they punched out (with a tool, not a fist) the door locks in seven cases and they smashed windows in at least a dozen crimes. Some cars were left unlocked or the bad guys simply found some unknown way into the vehicle.

Oftentimes it appeared the thieves were just moseying through the parking lot or down the street when they spotted something of value sitting in the car. In a couple of those cases the victims were only gone for 10 minutes. People who went into their child's school to drop off a note or into the take out counter at a restaurant came out to find someone swiped their stuff. That means the suspects were probably sitting in a car watching people or milling about in the lot or on the street prior to the burglary. Keep an eye out for a guy or guys just sitting there for no reason. But if that guy is eating a burrito while listening to sports talk radio, it could just be one of us watching the bad guys watching you.

How do we catch them, you ask? Call us. Whether it's the guy skulking around a parking lot at noon or someone walking down your street at 4 a.m. while obviously not delivering the News-Sentinel, give us a call.

Due to reductions in personnel, some valley law enforcement agencies will not respond to suspicious person calls. We still do, and usually have officers there within a few minutes, depending on what else is going on in the city.

In the unfortunate event a burglary actually did occur, our officers will talk with you, check with neighbors and witnesses, gather evidence and, if conditions permit, dust for fingerprints. That type of service is just one more advantage of living in the city of Lodi.

More about

More about

More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don’t pretend you’re someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don’t threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don’t insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the ‘Report’ link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.
  • 9 Don’t be a troll.
  • 10 Don’t reveal personal information about other commenters. You may reveal your own personal information, but we advise you not to do so.
  • 11 We reserve the right, at our discretion, to monitor, delete or choose not to post any comment. This may include removing or monitoring posts that we believe violate the spirit or letter of these rules, or that we otherwise determine at our discretion needs to be monitored, not posted, or deleted.

Welcome to the discussion.

Recent Comments

Posted 13 hours ago by Steve Schmidt.

article: Letter: What is happening in this count…

The Founding Father's would be proud of these students for standing up to these small minded would be tyrants. It is a shame there isn't …

More...

Posted 14 hours ago by Eric Barrow.

article: Letter: What is happening in this count…

"Rip the heart and soul out of this once proud nation" How about a little pride in these young people willing to look unabashed a…

More...

Posted 14 hours ago by Steve Schmidt.

article: Letter: What is happening in this count…

Imagine how the story of the Boston Tea Party will have to be taught under these restrictions. Irony... Ya gotta love it!

More...

Posted 14 hours ago by Eric Barrow.

article: Letter: What is happening in this count…

How about the just present the facts and let people decide for themselves what part of the American story is positive and what you are prou…

More...

Posted 14 hours ago by Eric Barrow.

article: Steve Hansen: Climate change is real, b…

Slowly but surely the naysers come around some time in the future the Steve Hansen's of the world will be admitting that man did have a han…

More...

Video

Popular Stories

Poll

What would you like to see in Lodi's parks?

Lodi's Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Department is hosting a public workshop at 7 p.m. at Hutchins Street Square to find out how it can better meet the needs of the community. What would you like to see in Lodi's parks?

Total Votes: 203

Loading…

Your News

News for the community, by the community.

Featured Events

Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists