Janesville neighborhood has spate of car break-ins
JANESVILLE The officer followed the trail of belongings up the street.
At the corner of Brakefield Drive and Berkshire Road, he found a wallet.
Turning onto Berkshire, he found a purse.
He found the wallet’s owner at her home around the corner on Canterbury Lane. Two dollars were missing from the wallet. On the way, he found a compact disc case and the owner’s manual for a 2007 Ford Taurus.
Looking in the purse he found on Berkshire, he found it belonged to Brandy Hogue. Her driver’s license wasn’t stolen, but her military ID, her Social Security card and $50 were gone.
Hogue usually locks her green Plymouth Breeze when she parks it in the driveway. Not this time.
“I ran inside quick and fell asleep,” Hogue said. “I usually lock it.”
Her sister’s car was parked in the driveway and locked. The thieves broke the lock while attempting to pick it.
The thefts from cars in the Berkshire Heights neighborhood on Janesville’s east side were overnight June 17. As the summer goes on, police are seeing more thefts from cars parked on streets and driveways. It was enough of an increase that the department posted a reminder on its Facebook page and agreed to talk to The Gazette about the thefts.
“I know we’ve had enough of a rash of thefts from cars to warn residents,” Janesville police Sgt. Charles Aagaard said.
He is not aware of a sudden increase in the number of break-ins to homes in the city, but the two are linked, Aagaard said.
“When you keep your garage door opener in your unlocked car, you’ve given them access to your house,” Aagaard said. “Garage your car if you can, and keep it locked.”
PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY
Janesville police offered the following tips to prevent thefts from vehicles:
-- Make sure your windows are up, your sunroof is closed and your doors are locked whenever your car is parked.
-- Try to park your car near streetlights or other lights. Avoid isolated areas.
-- Don’t leave anything of value in plain view in your vehicle. If you need to store something, put it in the trunk.
-- Do not leave house keys, car keys or any identification in your car, even if it is parked in the garage.
-- Report any suspicious activity in your neighborhood by calling the Janesville Police Department non-emergency line at (608) 757-2244.
-- For questions, contact public safety Sgt. Brian Donohoue at (608) 755-3133. Get more tips by following the department on Facebook at “Janesville Police Department Crime Prevention.”