Jul 28, 2014
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Danville Police Put Focus on Town's Increased Car Break-ins

Police department using bait cars and plain clothes officers to help thwart recent rash of car break-ins.

Danville Police Put Focus on Town's Increased Car Break-ins

On March 8, there were , relatively close to each other in both proximity and time.

The two crimes took place at 9:23 p.m. and again at 10:05 p.m. in the Clock Tower parking lot and at Railroad Avenue and Prospect respectively.

At the time, Danville Police Lt. Jeff Moule said the two were "isolated incidents."

"Historically, we haven't had sustained crime activity in one particular area," he added.

He also said that the crimes were likely linked.

Almost a month later, car break-ins have now become an issue in Danville.

Since Feb. 19 there have been 43 car break-ins. (April 1-7), and (March 25-31).

"There has been an increase lately," Danville Police Chief Steve Simpkins said.

"We're working on these cases," he added. "Any time we see a couple incidents, we will proactively go out. We're proactive instead of reactive."

Nearly 30 percent (12) of the car break-ins are south of and north of Crow Canyon Road, and between Camino Ramon and El Capitan.

"It would seem to me that they are linked," Simpkins said of the southern Danville cluster of break-ins. "We are working on leads."

There is also clusters between the Livery -- at Sycamore Valley Road and San Ramon Valley Boulevard -- and downtown Danville, a handful around , and another cluster around the Blackhawk Plaza area.

Many of the break-ins are reported in the morning to Danville Police in the morning, most likely from those heading to work and finding their automobile burglarized.

Simpkins said the department has been targeting these some of these areas with plain-clothes officers and bait cars. Results were unavailable.

Simpkins, however, said the department has been working on a number of leads. He said these leads might include tracking stolen phones and monitoring Craigslist for stolen goods.

In addition to what the department can do to thwart these car break-ins, Simpkins said Danville residents can help out the investigators tremendously with prevention by making sure car doors are locked and items of value are hidden or removed from the vehicles.

"When we arrest the bad guys they tell us they come here for the opportunity," Simpkins said. "This is a really safe community, but still lock your doors and don't leave valuables in the car."

The department, via the Town's website, offers up these tips:

  • Do not leave your car unlocked.
  • Never leave valuables in plain sight.
  • Do not leave cell phones or GPS unit in your car.
  • Never leave an extra key on your car. Thieves know all the hiding spots.
  • Never leave your garage door opener inside your car.
  • Avoid leaving your car in an under-used parking lot. A busier lot means more witnesses and guardians.
  • Try and park in well-lit areas.
  • Do not leave personal information in your car, such as bank statements or forms of identification.
  • Be observant of your surroundings.

Read more crime prevention tips from the department here.

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