Eye On Crime: String of Auto Thefts in Midland, How To Keep From Being A Victim 2/4/13
CBS 7 News Reporter
February 4, 2013
MIDLAND, TX – Midland police say a few seconds of careless behavior can make you the victim of vehicle theft.
"When I'm just going into get gas and coming right back out, sometimes I don't lock it [the car door] " said Midlander Tayse Young.
Unlocked doors are a reoccurring factor in a string of auto thefts happening in Midland.
I showed many drivers how easy it is to enter their unlocked vehicle at one local gas station. But some say they aren't concerned about locking their doors because they live in a "good area".
“I don't lock it [the car door] at all. Not even in my house," said Tino Larea.
Law enforcement officials say it’s a lack of concern for your vehicle that can make you a victim of car theft.
Midland police say since January 1st more than 10 cars were stolen in the area around Midland Drive and A Street.
"I think it's carelessness and they were crimes of opportunity. He [the thief] found something that was easy to get and most of these were at apartment complexes," stated Sergeant Darin Clements with Midland police crime prevention.
According to www.crimemapping.com, 3 car thefts occurred last week. In detail, the online database shows that 5 vehicle thefts and break in related incidents happened last week.
Police say the growing trend may be linked to one individual. However Clements says there are people who make stealing cars a career.
"Most car thefts can be preventable. But if someone wants your vehicle bad enough, there are professional rings of people that go around stealing cars. We’re close enough to the border; several of our vehicles will end up across the border," stated Sergeant Darin Clements with Midland Police Crime Prevention.
With all the stats laid in line, the question still remains. Are you going to lock your door now?
Midland police say you can also park in a lighted area, close your garage door, and take your keys out of the ignition when you leave your vehicle.
Police say many stolen cars end up across the border. But the Midland Police Department is part of a nation wide program called "H.E.A.T." - help end auto theft.
It allows law enforcement to check vehicles in the program between 1:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. anywhere in Texas, including crossing into Mexico. For more information call MPD at (432) 685-7110.
Be sure to watch every Monday night at 6pm and 10pm. CBS 7 News will be taking a closer look at crime happening in West Texas in your “Eye on Crime”.