Ways to Prevent Smash and Grab Thefts

By: Estephany Escobar Email
By: Estephany Escobar Email

WAYNESBORO, Va.--Waynesboro Police Department is alerting citizens to protect their valuables after items were stolen from two cars on Monday.

The smash and grabs happened at Ridgeview park in the middle of the day, according to Waynesboro Police. Thieves smashed the windows before stealing the items. In both incidents, the victims left purses visible in the cars.

Sergeant Chris Hilliard said it is more likely to happen if you leave your valuables in plain sight.

"Secure your items inside your vehicle. If you have a pocketbook or things of value, maybe iPods, phones or things of that nature, sitting in the open is more enticing for someone to try take those items," said Hilliard.

He said a car break-in can happen in a matter of seconds.

Lynn Lunger who lives near the park said this incident is not surprising.

"We've had our vehicles broken into and a couple of bikes stolen off of our front porch," said Lunger.

However, she said she left her car unlocked.

"It seems more likely around here that people will break into cars. It seems more unusual to have the windows smashed," said Lunger.

To prevent from being a target, Hilliard recommends neighbors to take items with them when parking their car.

"If you can't remove them, if you can't take them where you are going, do your best to hide them. If you have an SUV try to use a cover in the back that will cover any valuables there," said Hilliard.

Lunger said this is something she keeps in mind.

"As a reminder even if you come into the pool or coming into the store for just a few minutes just to bring in your belongings with you and lock your car," said Lunger.

Hilliard tells me this case is unusual because car break-ins usually happen at night. The last smash and grab before this one was in March. The people responsible for the smash and grab on Monday will face felony charges, if caught.

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