In a matter of seconds a thief who had been checking out parked and unattended vehicles in a car park near Worthing Crematorium had entered one and made off with valuables left on view in the interior.
The incident, captured on closed circuit television (CCTV), showed just how easy it is for opportunist thieves to strike.
It should serve as a timely reminder never to leave expensive items on car seats or within the vehicle where they can be seen. They should at least be hidden away, perhaps in the boot, but ideally should be removed by the owner altogether. And dootrs and windows should always be locked shut.
Inspector Allan Lowe, from the Adur and Worthing Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “Since November we’ve had a significant increase in break-ins involving parked cars. It appears that the offender(s) are entering the vehicles via an insecure door. Small items such as satellite navigation units, tools, handbags, mobile phones, purses and wallets have been reported stolen.
“We have increased patrols in the area and are seeking to stop this activity as soon as possible. In the meantime you can help by making sure you lock your vehicles and haven’t left anything of value in them.
“We have been working with our Police Cadets over the last few weeks in areas where thefts have taken place to speak to residents and raise their awareness of making sure they remove their property and lock their vehicle properly. “
Inspector Lowe urged motorists to look at some of the key messages students from Northbrook College developed in a vehicle crime project earlier this year, click here for more information
And he said: “With Christmas almost upon us and gifts and similar items often left in cars while owners are shopping, attention to security is particularly important”.
See this link for CCTV footage, click here
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