Unlocked cars present "A Crime of Opportunity"

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - It may be something we forget to do: lock our car doors. But the Montgomery Police Department says it's becoming a city-wide problem. Recently, one subdivision has seen a rash of car break-ins.

In about 5 minutes, they will be in it and gone," Montgomery resident Jerry Champion said.

Champion has lived in this house in Halcyon subdivision in East Montgomery for six years. For the first time he fell victim to a car break-in.

"Someone stole a TV out of the SUV here," Champion said.

It happened early Sunday morning two weeks ago. He admits, the hatch was not completely closed and locked.

"During the day, while you're at work or late at night," Champion said.

And he's not alone, Montgomery Police Chief Kevin Murphy says 29 break-ins have occurred throughout the neighborhood. Some of the owners reported no thefts, but others like champion had personal items stolen.

"And it's just a crime of opportunity," Murphy said.

Chief Murphy says all of the 29 vehicles were left unlocked. He says on average 70 percent of the car break-ins across the city are unforced entry.

"Do not leave possessions, valuables, in the car and lock their car, we could probably reduce a lot of these thefts," Murphy said.

"We put out more motion lights outside so when people come up light come on," Champion said.

And remembering to lock up, no matter how safe you think you are.

Chief Murphy also said a few months back, North farms and Old Cloverdale were areas seeing a number of unforced car break-ins.

Police say other tips include making sure your windows are rolled up and activating a car alarm.

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