Lock your doors and take your valuables with you or lock them in the trunk. It is a warning we have heard hundreds of times but Lubbock Police said some shoppers are still ignoring the advice this holiday season. And now, police now have four people in custody to prove it.
The suspects are accused of breaking into cars at shopping and dining hot spots along South Loop 289. Arrests that police said should serve as a warning to other holiday shoppers.
The suspected crime spree apparently started Friday evening, on one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
Lubbock Police Sgt. Clay Winters told NewsChannel 11,"Dispatch received a call that subjects were breaking into a vehicle at the Wal-Mart at the South Loop and Quaker."
Soon after, Sgt. Winters said the suspects with the same description smashed the window of another vehicle outside Texas Land & Cattle Steak House on South Loop 289 and Indiana.
"A witness had been following the subjects as they left the area and officers were able to track them down in the area of South Loop and University and pulled them over in the parking lot of the Target there," Sgt. Winters said.
But not before 20-year-old Jimmy Laird, 36-year-old Randy Laird, 20-year-old Jacob Terrell, and 24-year-old Diana Dennis allegedly stole a purse, a social security card, credit cards, cells phones and a ski jacket.
Dennis's three-year-old son was with the group during the alleged crimes and was taken into CPS custody.
Police were able to recover the stolen items. However, Sgt. Winters said this is just one of the increasing number of auto burglaries in the hub city this holiday season.
"It appears that they went out with the intent of breaking into vehicles," Winters added.
A crime does not seem to be worrying some Lubbock shoppers.
Shopper Lexie Wilson told NewsChannel 11 she was not too concerned about her car being broken into this time of year.
"I'm really a trusting person," Wilson added.
Shopper Lindsey Crews said she sometimes leaves her shopping bags inside her car.
Something that police said invites burglars to look into your car.
"It's just like window shopping. They're going to walk by and if they find something then that's the one they're going to break into too."
All four suspects are charged with engaging in organized crime, credit card abuse and burglary of a vehicle.
Police tell us thieves target citizens in large shopping parking lots, movie theaters and day cares. However, NewsChannel 11 has also learned of two instances this past weekend where there were break-ins in two restaurant parking lots.
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