Burglary to Vehicles

Burglary to Motor Vehicles is a Crime of Opportunity

Crime in Sleepy Hollow is generally low, but one crime that does occur more frequently than others,
especially in the summer months, is Burglary to Motor Vehicle.

Most thefts occur when valuables are left unattended. The thief normally seeks privacy to commit
his/her act. Virtually any article left in plain view is apt to be stolen. Most property that is stolen is left
unattended or unlocked.

Who provides the burglar with the opportunity? The victim provides the burglar with the opportunity by
leaving their vehicle unlocked or their window open. Most property stolen is left in plain view where anyone
walking by the car can see it lying there.

What are their favorite targets? Anything of value. The property most preferred is cash or loose change
that is left in the console or ashtray of the vehicle. They also like DVD's, wallets, purses, laptops, tablets,
cellular phones, radar detectors, and GPS Units.

When do auto burglaries occur? Most auto burglaries occur at night while the vehicle is parked outside
the victim's residence. Some burglars also target vehicles that are parked in parking lots while their owners
are at work, in class, or shopping. They know it's going to be a long time before the owner returns to their
car and the likelihood of being caught is low.

What can I do to keep from being the victim of a burglary? Park your car in a garage or parking lot that
is supervised by an attendant. Park your car in well-lit areas away from places of concealment. Leave
exterior lights on your home if your vehicle is parked outside. Close your windows and lock your doors.
Never hide a key in one of those magnetic key boxes, because if you can find it, so can a burglar. Take
your valuables with you when you leave your car or lock them in the trunk out of sight.

What should I do if I find my car has been burglarized? Report anyone that is seen trying door handles,
looking in cars or loitering in the area. If the burglary is in progress Call 911.
Do not get inside the car to see what's missing because you may be destroying evidence needed to catch
the burglar.

Burglary to Motor Vehicle Prevention Tips

Remove visible items from your vehicle - If you leave items visible in your car, you are a target. Be aware
that someone may be watching as you put a wallet, purse, GPS unit or cell phone under your seat,
especially at a gym. Take these with you or secure them in your trunk.

  • Lock Up!
  • Lock your vehicle and take your keys, even for quick errands.
  • Lock the trunk, hatchback or tailgate to block access into the vehicle.
  • Close all windows, including sunroofs.
  • Vehicle alarms – If your vehicle has one, use it! Many people believe that alarms no longer make a difference; however, they do remain an effective deterrent to a burglar. Remember criminals are looking for the easy target.
  • Do not attach personal information to your keys - If your keys are stolen, having your personal information or vehicle license number attached only compounds the problem. A criminal now may have access to your home, automobile or office.
  • Mail - Do not leave outgoing or incoming mail in your car, especially where visible. This has your name and address on it.
  • Garage Door Opener - Avoid leaving this in your car if possible.
  • Park Safely!
  • At home, park in your garage if you have one. Lock your car and all garage doors.
  • Park in a well-lit area.

Remember, only you can prevent auto burglaries by removing your valuables from your vehicle and locking
them in a safe place. Help us to protect your property.

Article By, Chief James R. Linane Summer 2013