Police in Deer Lake are reminding residents to keep their vehicles locked and not to leave anything of value in them.
The Royal Canadian Police in the town say the reminder comes from an increase in thefts from motor vehicles and mischief to property complaints received in the past month.
“Since the end of March we’ve had approximately 20 reported,” said Cpl. Eric Humber of the number of thefts and incidents where people report their vehicle was entered but can’t say for sure if anything was taken.
And he said the increase in reports seems to be coinciding with the improving weather.
“Last year we had a spike in it as well and we were successful in identifying a few people responsible and laying charges.”
In one instance, police arrested a person returning home with over $120 in change. “And he was just out that one night,” said Humber.
Most often the thieves are looking for money, but Humber said they will also take small valuable items, like cellphones and laptops.
“They’re things that can be easily concealed or easily sold for money.”
Humber said the thefts are mostly occurring from unlocked vehicles and the items are readily accessible. He said police have not received any calls where there was any damage to a vehicle that was entered.
As for what residents can do to prevent vehicle break-ins, Humber said “keeping the vehicle locked is key.”
He also suggests not leaving change or things of high value in a vehicle.
“Nowadays with the way the currency is you can get a lot of money out of a vehicle when it comes to Toonies and Loonies and handfuls of change.”
Anyone with any information on the recent crimes can call the Deer Lake detachment at 635-2173 or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at www.nlcrimestoppers.com.