Southington police are warning people to lock their cars while pumping gas or going inside gas stations after several purses and backpacks were stolen from vehicles last week.
Police said they have received reports of six thefts at local gas stations over the past week and that empty vehicles were parked and unlocked by owners to pump gas or shop inside.
Police said the purse and backpack were in plain view inside the vehicles and the thieves quickly got back to their vehicles and left.
Police are urging residents to turn off their vehicles whenever they are left unattended.
When you’re at a gas station, take off your keys and lock your vehicle when you exit to pump gas or go in, police warn.
If you carry a purse or bag, make sure it is not in plain view or readily available.
If anyone has any information or video related to motor vehicle theft or theft, police ask you to share it with the Southington Police Department Auto Theft Task Force by email, email@example.com.
Police also urge people to lock their doors, whether you are standing in front of your house, in your driveway or inside your garage. He said criminals like to walk on the road and see if the car is unlocked or not. If so, they open the door and take whatever they see and move on to the next target.
Where Southington was stolen from vehicles.
Southington Police said someone in a silver Audi Q5 stolen from Wolcott took the victim’s purse from a car in Mobil at the 1896 Meriden Waterbury Turnpike at 3:47 p.m. on September 6 while the victim was pumping gas.
The accused left at high speed. Police said the vehicle has been seized and action has been taken.
On September 7, a victim was pumping gas at Sunoko Gas Station at 398 Main Street at 10 a.m. and her purse was stolen from the passenger side of the vehicle.
On September 8, at 4:51 pm, a victim was inside Salsa’s Southwest Grill, when someone entered the vehicle and took out the purse.
Police said they had not identified a suspect.
On September 10, at 8:18 pm, a purse was stolen from a vehicle at the T/A Travel Center on Meriden-Waterbury Road, while the vehicle owner was pumping gas.
Police said a vehicle came in the opposite direction of the vehicle and someone in that car stole his purse.
A purse was stolen at 11:04 a.m. Sunday at the 1896 Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike in Mobil, when the victim was pumping gas, police said.
He said a male got off the white BMW SUV, entered the passenger side of the vehicle and stole the purse.
At 11:20 a.m. Sunday, a black diaper bag was stolen from the front passenger seat while the victim was pumping gas into a food bag at the 960 Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike.
Police said the description was the same as what was suspected in the moments of the first burglary
Earlier this month, at 8:06 p.m. on September 4, food bags were stolen from a vehicle at the 960 Meriden Waterbury Turnpike. Police said the suspect vehicle has also been seized.
The police make the following suggestions:
close your doors
Most car break-ins and thefts happen from unlocked cars. Whether you’re standing in front of your house, in your driveway or inside your garage, lock your doors. Criminals like to walk down the street and see if a car is unlocked, if so they open the door and take whatever they see and move on to the next target. However, if the door is closed, they are more likely to move on.
secure your vehicle
Fully roll up your car windows and set up a car alarm, but don’t rely on it to deter a burglar. A car thief can break into your car and get out in about 30 seconds, fast enough that the alarm won’t scare off most of them.
keep your vehicle clean
Thieves love window shop! Avoid seeing anything in the car. Almost anything that is visible from the outside—even if you think it’s worthless—can be seen as valuable to a thief.
Your spare change, sunglasses, even an empty bag (the thief might think there’s something inside the bag) can be valuable in the thief’s mind.
hide all evidence
Keep your electronics and accessories well out of sight, or just take it with you. The evidence alone may be enough to pique the interest of thieves, including items such as power cords, adapters, and GPS windshield suction-cup mounts. If you remove the suction cup, be sure to wipe the ring off the windshield; It’s a dead gift that you own a GPS.
stash before park
Make a habit of keeping hidden objects in your car trunk before you reach your destination. Thieves will wander in the busy parking lot looking for you to hide your valuables.
- Park in a busy, well-lit area and avoid hiding from large vehicles, fences, or foliage.
- Avoid parking in secluded and dimly lit areas.
What to do if you witness theft:
If you notice a break-in or burglary in progress, the police ask you to call 911 immediately and provide the 911 dispatcher with as much information as possible, such as:
- Location – Provide an address, block number or specific location in the parking lot.
- Suspect details – provide as much information as you can, ie gender, race, age, height, weight, hair color and length, color and length of facial hair, color and clothing style, and identification marks such as tattoos and piercings .
- Directions – If the suspect runs away, give the direction of travel. If they run away by bicycle or vehicle, describe the colour, make, model and license plate number, if it is safe to do so!