Over the past year, Morris County has seen a rise in the number of car burglaries and stolen vehicles. As a result, Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon is asking for the public’s help in dealing with the issue.
Car burglars often visit residential neighborhoods and literally walk up and down streets checking car door handles to see if the vehicles are locked. Once an unlocked vehicle is located, they usually first look to steal any for valuable items.
In some cases, they find key fobs (remote-entry devices) which allow them to start the vehicle and drive away. In addition, car thieves use a phone app to locate vehicles with key fobs inside, which can make the theft of your car a quick and easy process, said Sheriff Gannon.
In 2017, the Morris County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Section responded to local towns in Morris County to process 168 motor vehicle burglaries for evidence and latent prints. Only forty-one of those vehicles were reported to have been locked.
The Sheriff’s Criminal Investigation Section also responded to and processed 89 motor vehicles that were stolen from within the county in 2017. Of those vehicles, only 15 were reported to have been locked or secured in a structure before being stolen. The remaining 74 vehicles were parked and left unlocked with keys or key fobs inside.
“Car burglaries and stolen vehicles can lead to additional crimes, such as home burglaries and identity theft if keys, garage door openers, purses and wallets are left in vehicles,” said Sheriff Gannon. “Help protect yourself and your family and let’s work together to make Morris County a safer place.”
By following these tips you can take an active role in preventing crime in Morris County:
- Lock your vehicle and remove the key fob.
- Do not leave valuables in your vehicle.
- Protect your identify and accounts by removing purses, wallets or checkbooks from your vehicle.
- Contact your local Police Department to report any suspicious individuals or vehicles in your neighborhood.
Report tips and remain anonymous by contacting The Morris County Sheriff’s CrimeStoppers at:
973-COP-CALL or www.copcall.org from your mobile device.
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