If it’s a warm, sunny Saturday in Lake Highlands, Texas, you’re sure to find flocks of families on the fields at Moss Park to watch their kids play soccer. Keep an eye on your car, though. Thieves know parents are engrossed in the game, and there’s been a rash of recent burglaries in the soccer field parking lot.
“At our 8 AM game, 5 cars were broken into (some windows were smashed in, and some doors were unlocked),” shared one mom on social media. “Purses, laptops and wallets were stolen. The thieves were at Walmart within minutes racking up the charges. A field volunteer said someone was going around last weekend as well, trying to open car doors. It’s a busy, loud place all day, this happened 15 yards from our game with people coming and going in the parking lot. Take your purse with you and leave other valuables at home!”
Volunteers in the Lake Highlands Soccer Association office acknowledge the recent thefts have become a problem.
“WARNING: We have had reports of car theft at Moss Park recently,” they shared on their website. “Remember to put valuables in trunk and lock your car.”
Dallas police say more than 20,000 cars and trucks in Dallas are broken into with property removed each year. That’s about 50 vehicles each day. DPD sees it all, including GPS units, sunglasses, radar detectors, phones, backpacks – even coin cups.
DPD says criminals view parking lots, like the one at Moss Park, as easy shopping opportunities. It takes less than a minute to break the vehicle window, unlock the door and remove items left inside. Most of the time, there are no witnesses because thieves are so quick at their “work.” Perps also consider burglary of a motor vehicle (BMV) to be low risk, since it’s a misdemeanor offense in Texas and carries little time behind bars. Only on the third conviction does BMV become a felony. Thieves can quickly use stolen credit cards at department stores, gas stations or online stores, and they can pawn stolen goods for fast cash.
If you want to avoid becoming a victim of BMV, remember “take, lock and hide” next time your kid has a soccer match.
- Take your property with you (or leave it at home). Hint: suction cup mounts leave a ring on the windshield, and thieves who see this sometimes break in to find units tucked away.
- Locking your car may not keep all bad guys away, but breaking windows is noisy, and they hate noise.
- Hide valuables before you leave home, since scouts may be at the field watching as parents tuck items under seats or in the trunk. Better yet, leave the good stuff at home.
You’ll find more tips on the DPD website here.