Local News

Cary reports 14 car break-ins this week

Posted May 21, 2009 5:59 p.m. EDT
Updated May 21, 2009 6:50 p.m. EDT

— Cary police said Thursday they have received more than a dozen reports of vehicle break-ins in which global positioning systems have been stolen.

Most occurred overnight during the past week outside hotels and apartments in the Walnut Street-Dillard Drive and Harrison Avenue-Maynard Road areas of town.

"It's not uncommon for us to have one or two a day, but when we have a rash to exceed 10 a day, that's something that causes us great concern, and we want to immediately notify the public," Cary Police Capt. Michael Williams said.

"It's horrible. You feel like you're really being invaded," said Diana Lebron, whose GPS was stolen from her car Tuesday night outside her Cary apartment. "It's like, what else are they going to do?"

Twelve other vehicles were broken into Tuesday, Williams said. Another break-in was reported the next day. In each case, GPS units were stolen.

The increase in auto break-ins might not be limited to Cary.

Eric Bottomley, operations manager for Glass Doctor in Raleigh, said his auto-glass repair company has received 40 calls this week from people in Cary, Raleigh and Durham who had their vehicles broken into.

Typically, the company gets about five crime-related calls a week, he said.

"This is the biggest spike in something like this that we've seen," Bottomley said.

"We have definitely seen a noticeable increase in this type of theft in recent months," Durham police spokeswoman Kammie Michael said, although she did not have specific numbers.

Raleigh police spokesman Jim Sughrue said there have been 202 vehicle larcenies since January. During the same time last year, there were 214.

"Larcenies from motor vehicles are probably the most common crime affecting Joe and Jane Resident," Sughrue said, adding that the vast majority of them can be prevented.

"The crimes occur because a criminal either finds an unlocked car and looks around inside for valuables, or sees valuables inside a car, and steals them through an unlocked door or by busting a window," he said.

Williams said the best way to prevent vehicle break-ins is to remove valuables. He also recommends keeping records of serial numbers, which can sometimes be used to trace stolen valuables.