Lubbock's 2003 crime report is in and the report shows that crime overall is up nearly 10%, but the report isn't all bad news.
The reports compare crimes in 2003 to ones in 2002. These reports were actually mixed. Murders have increased by three more than 2002. Rape is down, so is aggravated assault.
In 2003, there were 32 less rapes, 98 less aggravated assaults, and 150 less burglaries than 2002. However, in 2003, there were three more murders, eight more robberies, 1,400 more thefts, and 120 more vehicles thefts than 2002.
|A Closer Look at Auto Theft|
It only takes minutes until you become a victim. According to Lubbock police, car burglaries have always been a problem. But recently, it's been a problem for Texas Tech police at the Health Sciences Center and on the main campus as well.
As of March 1st, Major Richard Foster has seen reports of 48 car burglaries. Thanks to watchful eyes, TTU Police were able to catch seven of the suspects who committed 23 of the crimes. "At least two of the suspects (young men) traveled from Hereford to commit the crime," said Major Foster.
Lubbock police are taking action against car burglaries with added patrol. "Talk about car burglaries. We were having some problems at Tinsletown. We've gone out to put special patrols to try to cut that down," said Thomas Esparza, Assistant Police Chief of Investigations of the Lubbock Police Department.
Police officers say thieves are either breaking windows or popping locks to get inside a vehicle. "From the time it takes to forcibly enter a vehicle and steel a car stereo, less than five minutes," said Foster.
So we decided to test out that time. NewsChannel 11 asked the people at Burgess Auto Salvage to help us. From the moment we broke the glass, it took us seconds to just break the window. Imagine how many more seconds a criminal needs to get what he wants.
The bottom line is, police need you to be a good witness and to report anything suspicious. "Thanks to witnesses who called police, got a vehicle description, we were able to arrest those individuals after the crimes occurred," said Foster.
If you see suspicious activity, you can report to police by calling (806) 775-2817 or Texas Tech Police at (806) 742-3931.