Vandals and Burglars Strike Over the Weekend - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/14/05

Vandals and Burglars Strike Over the Weekend

Vandalism and burglary are on the increase when kids are out of school. After Sunday night alone, the Lubbock Police Department took 11 calls of criminal mischief to a vehicle and eight calls of burglary to a vehicle. Those cases were concentrated in Southwest and South Central Lubbock. But police warn the problem is widespread during school holidays. Captain Glen Fowler says, "Sometimes we have a spike in vehicle burglaries and criminal mischief when school is not in session and here we are at the beginning of spring break."

On any given night police expect a number of criminal mischief cases, but this weekend was especially active. Zip Auto Glass is just one of many shops around town seeing their window repairs double this week, but the spike in business brings with it some upset customers. Zip General Manager, Harold Ellis recalls a typical interaction with an angry customer saying, "Hi, welcome to Zip. (Customer: "I'm mad)." Not a situation that works out real good, until we're able to take care of them."

A new windshield can cost anywhere from $50 to $600 to replace. That's a big price to pay for kids just raising cain. Ellis says, "They're just picking them out at random, finding one they think might make a neat noise and going from there."

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Sometimes the vandalism turns into burglary, using the broken windows as a way into your valuables. Short of parking in a garage, the best way to protect yourself is to not leave CD's, money, sunglasses, anything of value visible in your car." Captain Fowler says, "If you do have to leave something, lock it in the trunk and park in a well lit area, and car alarms are something good."

Fowler says one of the best tools for catching criminals is the public. If you see anything suspicious going on in your neighborhood, call Crime Line at (806) 741-1000.

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