Vehicle Break-Ins Plague Broken Arrow Neighborhood
BROKEN ARROW, Oklahoma - Thieves targeting cars in one Broken Arrow neighborhood have been caught on camera. This growing trend is popping up in Lakewood Village.
The crooks wait until dark and after they believe homeowners are in bed before trying to break into vehicles.
One victim said things just simply aren't the same there anymore.
“I would estimate that this little community of 51 houses they've probably cost this community over 20,000 dollars," said Mike Goodman with the Homeowners Association.
Goodman has called Lakewood Village home for 11 years. Last week, thieves broke into his car.
The crime was caught on his surveillance camera.
"It's a quick opportunity for them. It takes them literally 10 seconds to open the door, look at what they want, grab what they want, and they're gone," Goodman said.
"Seeing the video makes me go ‘wow, what is happening in our neighborhood’," said neighbor Fran Lasiter.
Goodman isn't the only resident to record a car break-in recently.
In one video, you can see a man shining a flashlight and checking the locks on vehicles.
"They've gone through our cars before. I think this is the 4th or 5th time they've gone through the cars," Lasiter said.
Broken Arrow Police say break-ins happen most often when people leave their cars unlocked because it's an easier and quieter way to get in.
Many times if they spot something in plain sight, they will break the windows.
"We want everybody to be cognizant of their surroundings, their vehicles, and the stuff they leave in their vehicles," said Broken Arrow Police Officer James Koch.
Neighbors said while it may seem convenient to leave valuables in your car, don't, because thieves are on the prowl for anything of any value.
"I want these guys arrested. I want to see them pay for the thousands and thousands of dollars that they've cost this community," Goodman said.
Officers said they've had 218 car break-ins so far this year. That's actually down from the 308 break-ins the city had from January to May last year.
If you recognize the people in the surveillance video, call CrimeStoppers at (918) 596-COPS.