KETTERING, Ohio (WDTN) — Kettering Police report that thefts from vehicles are on the rise as the weather starts to heat up. Those situations, they say, tend to be a matter convenience for the thieves, and taking a few simple steps could prevent you from be becoming the next victim.
Tyler Johnson, public information officer for Kettering Police Department, says 11 thefts from vehicles occurred in April, while another nine happened in May, and he said the thieves are taking everything they can get their hands on.
“Inside of the cars, anything of value,” he said. “People — thieves — will take anything that they think they can sell quickly. Cellphones, laptops, iPads, change, cash.”
In some cases, items outside of vehicles are being taken as well — typically catalytic converters. While Johnson said the department handles reported thefts, he said one of the easiest ways to avoid becoming a victim starts with a push of a button.
“The vast majority are unlocked vehicles, unattended vehicles parked on the roadway or in a parking lot of business,” he explained. “Very rarely do we see the kind of ‘smash and grab’ types of thefts where they actually break the window. It does happen, but as a general rule, we only really see those thefts from unlocked vehicles.”
On top of locking doors, Johnson recommends parking in well-lit areas that are visible from your home whenever possible and always taking valuables out of your car. But if for any reason you can’t, “Keep it the trunk and cover it, said Johnson. “Don’t let people see you putting items in your trunk either or in the back of your vehicle. There are people that will kind of scope out parking lots and watch people as they’re doing those acts, and so they know exactly what to go for.”
Johnson said a handful of those thefts occurred near Dixie Highway and on Dorothy Lane where many businesses are located. He said if for any reason a thief does steal from your car, be sure to reach out to Kettering Police.