Four Items Taken From Four Unlocked Cars

Police enourage writing down serial numbers in case a valuable item is stolen

It’s a tough crime to solve, but an easy one to prevent.

Local law enforcement is seeing a lot of items taken from cars overnight.

They say there isn’t a pattern of what is being stolen, or a specific area.

But there’s one thing in common in all these cases, the items are stolen from unlocked cars.

“Whether it’s a purse, wallets, credit cards, laptops, cell phones, pretty much anything under the sun is left in a car and people leave it unlocked,” says Sioux Falls Police Officer Sam Clemens.

He says four items were taken from four unlocked cars Wednesday night.

A neighbor to a victim who had their laptop stolen says instances like this have trained him to be more cautious with his car.

“I lock it every time I get out of it,” says Floyd Protuy of Sioux Falls.

Protuy says it hasn’t always been this way.

“We used to wake up occasionally with just the screen door shut and didn’t think too much of it,” he explains. “Sixty years ago, you never locked your door, but that’s just the way it is now.”

“We have a safe community in Sioux Falls, but that doesn’t mean there are not people out there looking to take advantage,” says Officer Clemens, and when they do, he says the suspects are hard to catch.

But there is one way to be proactive in case a valuable item is stolen: knowing the serial number.

“We subscribe to a technology service that’s integrated into our pawn software that’s called leads online,” says Badlands Pawn General Manager Steve Przyocki.

Przycocki says every day, when a person sells them a product, they’ll put the serial number into the database, which gets sent to local law enforcement.

“In the event that there is something matching that has been missing or a report has been filed, they’ll contact us and we put a police hold on it and keep it safe until they figure out what has to happen to it,” says Przyocki.

While this helps retrieve stolen items that someone was trying to sell, “locking those car doors, keeping the valuables out of the cars, that’s going to be the best option for keeping your property safe,” says Officer Clemens.

The items taken Wednesday night included gun magazines, a cell phone, a camera and a laptop.