DSNWS 11-15 Break-in Trend pic.jpg

Photo illustration by Rashad Milligan/Douglas County Sentinel Douglasville Police Chief Gary Sparks said entering autos are easy crimes for criminals to commit. "All they have to do is pull on your door," Sparks said. "If you don’t lock your door, you have your items sitting out there in plain view, they’ll just pull your door and guess what? Your phone’s gone. Your wallet’s gone. It’s a very easy crime of opportunity that’s occurring.”

Entering autos is an ongoing crime that local law enforcement deals with in Douglasville and Douglas County.

There have been 54 entering auto incidents in the county in the last 16 days, according to crimereports.com. Reserve at Sweetwater was hit with six entering autos on Friday morning around 7 a.m. There were two cases of theft from a vehicle off of Bomar Road last Thursday and last Saturday. The one on Thursday was committed around 7 p.m. and the one committed on Saturday happened around 10 a.m.

Douglasville Police Department Chief Gary Sparks wants to assure citizens that these incidents aren’t exclusive to the city or county.

“Entering autos is a crime that is being committed metro-wide, not just here in Douglasville or Douglas County,” Sparks said. “It’s a very easy crime for a criminal to commit. All they have to do is pull on your door. If you don’t lock your door, you have your items sitting out there in plain view, they’ll just pull your door and guess what? Your phone’s gone. Your wallet’s gone. It’s a very easy crime of opportunity that’s occurring.”

The DPD is currently doing undercover operations and using surveillance to put out information about the suspects and to catch the crooks, Sparks said.

The opportunity of a string of these crimes occurring in nearby jurisdictions like Cobb County is also a large possibility, Sparks said.

“People tend to think when we have crime in Douglasville that it’s just the narrative of Douglasville," Sparks said. "I assure that it’s not. These crimes are happening all over the metro area."

There will be a citizen workshop coming soon on car break-ins, according to Sparks. The workshop is aimed at giving citizens a heads-up on the type of crimes that happen in the area, but also on how to help law enforcement officers locate the suspects as well.

“Take your items out the car," Sparks said. "Put them in the trunk. Put them in your house. Just like now, holiday season. You go to one mall and then leave. You go to another mall, you leave your car, but you leave your items in the backseat of the chair. You come back, now your window’s busted and all of your things are gone. See what I’m saying? Or you get out, you don’t lock your car, they open your door and now all your stuff’s gone. Put your items in the trunk. That’s why we’re trying to have these training sessions to help citizens to help us. Don’t make it easy for the criminals where they can look in and see what you’ve got."

Sparks said an official date hasn't been set for the workshop on auto break-ins.

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