Thursday, May 23, 2013
Vehicular burglaries in Frisco up more than 50 percent compared to 2012
Most occurred with cars that were unlocked or quietly broken into.
FRISCO Vehicle burglaries are still a major problem in Frisco, Police Chief John Bruce said at his monthly report in front of the City Council on Tuesday.
So far this year the city has seen an increase of just 5.47 percent in total crimes reported compared to the same period last year, yet vehicle burglaries increased 55.41 percent. From January to April last year, only 148 vehicle burglaries were reported -- this year there were 230 reported vehicle burglaries for the same time span.
The overwhelming majority of those burglaries have occurred in vehicles that were either unlocked or were broken into through unknown means. Of the 69 vehicle burglaries in April, 47 were unlocked or broken into via unknown methods.
Bruce said residents of the city and visitors need to be mindful of locking their vehicles and hiding their belongings so their property isn't targeted.
"We had to take three people into jail recently who were over here burglarizing our cars, but they were from another city," he said, noting that a tip resulted in the suspects' arrests.
The Frisco Police Department has referred about 30 vehicle burglary reports to the FBI so far this year "as they met the criteria to having been committed by a known group of individuals who are passing through North Texas," according to the monthly police report.
Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Cheney agreed that the vehicle burglary increase is alarming but said residents simply need to lock their cars and hide their belongings to prevent most break-ins from taking place.
"It took a while, but I'm starting to remember that I need to hide my iPad under my seat when I leave my car," he said.
Bruce again emphasized the importance of the national hide-lock-take vehicle theft prevention awareness program that police departments across the state such as Frisco are involved with.
Despite the increase in vehicle burglaries, April's crime rate was down from March by 9 percent, although it was up from last April by 5.5 percent, about in line with the increase in crime rate so far this year. Frisco's population increased from 126,576 in April 2012 to 132,080 this April.
Violent crimes are relatively unchanged from the same point last year, with no murders reported thus far and five reported rapes compared to four through the first four months of 2012. Assaults were down significantly from last year, seeing a 16.76 decrease -- from 179 to 149.
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