A recent rash of vehicle burglaries in the Verde Villages offers a concrete lesson in foresight — the kind of lesson that may seem obvious but bears repeating: Lock vehicle doors.
In the early morning hours of Nov. 16, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office deputies were dispatched to the Verde Village units 2 and 4 regarding the vehicle burglaries.
YCSO Media Relations Coordinator Dwight D’Evelyn said the burglaries were discovered as “residents prepared to drive to work or while deputies canvassed the area and then notified owners,” and were made possible because of unlocked vehicle doors.
“Lock your vehicle,” D’Evelyn said. “It seems so simple, but many residents continue to believe their private driveway is somehow a safe zone from criminals.
Yes, it takes seconds to break a window, but doing so makes noise, and criminals hate making noise. There has been a rash of unlocked vehicle burglaries throughout Yavapai County communities over the past few months. In many cases, unattended firearms have been stolen.
Suspects who have been successful in obtaining valuables from unlocked vehicles will generally continue the scheme many times until caught, said D'Evelyn.
“The Sheriff’s Office continues to remind residents to simply lock their car when parked to prevent a theft," he said. "Fortunately for residents in this instance, the burglaries resulted in no property damage, little property loss and no injuries."
According to D’Evelyn, the loss of property was minor and included less than $10 in cash and a pair of sunglasses — but this is rarely the case. It appears the suspects may have been scared off on at least two occasions and could be juveniles just looking for quick cash. Several vehicles contained expensive tools and credit cards that were left untouched, D’Evelyn added, but warned residents that “there is always a possibility suspects could return after seeing some of valuables kept in victims’ vehicles.”
According to D’Evelyn, after vehicle burglaries in which identifiable property is stolen YCSO inspects and alerts business that pawn. YCSO also reviews electronically filed pawn slips to search for stolen property. In this instance, there was nothing traceable stolen in these thefts.
YCSO advises residents of the following to avoid becoming a victim of vehicle burglary:
- Hide valuables from sight or take items with you.
- Use caution when parking at trailheads, as they are a prime target for vehicle burglars. n Do not park in secluded areas.
- Take the face plate of your aftermarket car stereo with you when your leave your vehicle.
- Record serial numbers of property you may leave inside your vehicle.
Anyone with information about the suspects of the burglaries can call YCSO at 771-3260, or call Yavapai Silent Witness at 800-932-3232 to remain anonymous.