GREENSBURG (KDKA) — State Police in Westmoreland County are investigating after a string of recent vehicle break-ins in a number of local communities.
The neighborhoods in Westmoreland County have once again become the hunting grounds for thieves looking for a quick score.
“Unfortunately, in the eastern part of our coverage zones, we’ve had a multitude of vehicles broken into,” said Trooper Stephen Limani, of Pennsylvania State Police.
Derry Township, Ligonier and Wilpen have all been hit. And in many cases, the victims have unwittingly made it easy for the suspects.
“Most of the vehicles are unlocked,” said Trooper Limani. “They’re seeing computers, change, Garmins, things that are of value.”
Police say the thieves just have to open the vehicle door, get the good and go.
“It’s a crime of opportunity,” Trooper Limani says.
A lot of the problem is the victims are living an open-door lifestyle.
“That’s one of the misnomers,” says Trooper Limani. “If you live in one of these communities or affluent neighborhoods, crime isn’t gonna happen.”
So, who’s stealing out of cars? Police say mostly drug addicts who fence the items at pawnshops or flea markets. But some are savvier.
Before they get rid of computers and notebooks, police say they break into them to get personal information. Then, rip victims off a second time with identity theft.
Stopping all of it isn’t so easy.
“Obviously, lock your vehicle, take any valuable items out of your vehicle, and pay attention,” said Trooper Limani.