LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Louisville Metro Police say parts of the city are under attack, by thieves breaking into cars. Police say the number of break-ins is rising dramatically and they need help catching the people responsible.
The first place police noticed the problem was along River Road from the Waterfront to Zorn Avenue. They even put officers up in the water tower to keep an eye on the area. They say these thieves are bold and it will take more than locking your doors to protect your property.
Since August 1st, the number of car break-ins has skyrocketed, particularly in the east end. “With 110 offenses since the first of August, that is the anomaly,” said LMPD 5th Division Commander Major Mark Fox. In an average week, the 5th Division sees 8-12 vehicle break-ins, mostly unlocked cars. Last week, there were 35 and most of the cars were securely locked. “We’ve seen a lot of these where windows are broken, which is kind of another exception to the rule. Generally, in the crime category, the cars are unlocked,” Maj. Fox explained.
The thieves are targeting cars at parks, gyms, and golf courses. “If you’re watching somebody pull into a golf course,” said Maj. Fox, “You know they’re going to be away from their car for about 3 hours.”
But, tracking the thieves has been a challenge. “Honestly, I think it’s more than one person. Our descriptions have been very disparate. Some people have described African-American males, some people have described white males, white females even,” Maj. Fox said.
They’re targeting vehicles with valuables out in the open, taking anything they can grab quickly like purses, wallets, laptops, iPads, and smart phones. He believes the crimes may be driven by heroin addictions.
Police are warning people to be aware. Locking your car may not be enough. Don’t leave valuables in your car. If you have to, put them in the trunk. Not one of the victims in the most recent 100 cases reported items being stolen from the trunk. The thieves have just grabbed what is in plain sight. If you see anything, you’re asked to call 574-LMPD.