ALEXANDRIA POLICE DEPARTMENT
PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICE
2003 MILL ROAD
ALEXANDRIA, VIRGINIA 22314-4658
FEBRUARY 5, 2008 #08-009
2:30 P.M. HILDEBRANDT
AlexandriaPolice Urge Residents to Prevent Larcenies from Autos
The Alexandria Police Department has noted a significant increase in the number of portable electronic equipment stolen from vehicles over the past few months. During January 2008, a total of 60 electronic devices were stolen from 116 vehicles that were broken into. In all of these cases, the items were left in plain view. Additionally, in 17% of the cases the cars were unlocked!
These thefts are occurring almost exclusively among the portable electronic equipment (i.e., portable GPS devices, iPods, laptop computers, satellite radio, cell phones, etc.) that can be purchased separately and added to a vehicle. Most of these devices can be easily installed in a vehicle with no complicated wiring procedures. All that is required is to install a cradle in which a unit sits. These devices are portable and highly desirable.
Alexandria Police urge motorists to take the following precautions to deter thieves from stealing electronic equipment from their vehicles:
· Do not leave anything on display that could tempt a thief. Remove portable units from the dashboard, including the cradle. Do not simply put the unit in the glove box or under the seat. Thieves will quickly find them.
· Keep a supply of moist towelettes to clean the area of the windshield marked by a suction cup.
· Record serial numbers for all valuables (i.e., laptop computer, camera, satellite radio, cell phone, etc.) so that if the items are stolen and recovered they can be identified.
· Lock all doors and close windows when you leave your car, even if it is only for a short time. This includes filling up at the gas station.
· Look for a parking space in a well-lit, busy area.
· Purchase a cradle that mounts on the dash vents.
For further information, please contact the Alexandria Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit at 703.838.4520.