VicPD warning public after significant rise in break-ins to parkades, garages

VicPD warning public after significant rise in break-ins to parkades, garages
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VicPD is cautioning the public after noting a significant increase in the number of break and enters at underground parkades in 2020.

The Victoria Police Department is warning the public after seeing a significant increase in the number of break-ins occurring at underground parkades and garages over the course of 2020.

According to a recent police report, the number of reported break-and-enter at underground parkades, detached sheds, garages, and construction site storage lockers have doubled this year compared to the same time period in 2019.

Between Jan. 1 and Sept. 14, there were 414 reported break-ins reported at these locations, compared to 207 break-ins during the same period last year, marking a 100 per cent increase.

Victoria Police Department says that the most significant increase is the number of break-ins at underground parkades, which is 194 to date in 2020 (compared with 137 in 2019).

According to police, thieves target vehicles and storage lockers once they’ve managed to gain access to underground parkades.

“Thieves are focused on high value items such as bicycles, tech (phones, laptops, small appliances like vacuums and electronics) as well as tools often found in sheds, outbuildings and storage lockers,” reads a statement from the Victoria Police Department.

VicPD is suggesting the public take these steps in an effort to protect an individuals family and belongings:

  • Photograph bikes, important tech and tools, and record serial numbers. Email them to yourself to make for an easy to find record in the event they are stolen. Marking these items with contact information also makes it easy for officers to reach you when they recover your stolen property.
  • Strengthen locks and lighting on sheds and storage areas. If an item is really high value, it may be safer inside your residence or unit.
  • Never leave valuables inside a vehicle.
  • Make your property friendly but clearly private with short hedges, plants, fences and lights.
  • If you see someone suspicious in your underground parkade, call VicPD’s non-emergency line at 250-995-7654, extension 1.

Victoria police are continuing to encourage residents to call and report any instances of break and enters as officers say that reporting these incidents helps them to “identify trends, target prolific offenders, link incidents, return recovered stolen property and proactively deploy officers to your neighbourhood.”

Crimes can be reported over the telephone, through their online reporting service or by using the VicPD Connect App.

Graham CoxGraham Cox

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