WICHITA FALLS, TX
We're experiencing a nice hot summer here in Texoma but with the rise in temperatures comes a rise in crime. Wichita County is having a rash of car burglaries and several cases of lawn mower and garden equipment theft. F.B.I data shows the summer months see a 10% increase in crime everywhere.
Experts say there isn't one clear reason why crime rises during the months of June, July and August. Most likely with more people outside there's simply more opportunity. Wichita Falls Police Officer Brandi Young says much of the rise in summer theft is because there are more chances for crime.
“It could be someone walking down the street and seeing a garage door open with a lot of equipment sitting there or someone seeing a lot of equipment in the back of a vehicle or the back of a trailer that's left unattended."
She says the first line of defense is to Lock It Up.
“If you're not outside in the vicinity of your garage close it. If you're working on your yard and you're not actively using your equipment lock it back up in the garage or the shed where ever you keep it.”
She says to be careful when you're transporting equipment.
“In the vehicles it's tough - like when you're going out to do yard work and have to stop at the store - but you just have to remember that if it's there that leaves the opportunity open for the criminals.”
She says keep in mind that there's always a criminal out there looking for opportunity.
Lawn equipment isn't the only thing thieves are targeting. Young says there was a rash of car burglaries this morning in the Kemp and Kell area. Four cars were broken into.
“I'm not sure whether they were locked or unlocked. I think we had a little bit of both. If you do have to leave you belongings in the car hide then put them in the trunk cover them up with something.”
The Wichita Falls Police Department advises three simple rules to avoid car burglary.