Car prowls remain a problem in the Puget Sound region. Recently, Bellevue police apprehended 3 car prowlers who were open about how they operated.
At least one of the car prowlers broke into cars to feed his heroin habit. The three were charged with possession of a stolen vehicle. And two of the three were charged with identity theft.
Car prowls in residential area usually occur at night. These car prowlers:
· Targeted wealthier neighborhoods that did not have “Neighborhood Watch” signs.
· They checked every door handle for unlocked doors.
· If they could get into a car, they would look for spare keys in consoles and glove boxes.
· They avoided apartment complexes for fear of being seen.
· They also avoided homes with open windows, security signs or surveillance cameras.
While some of the methods that the car prowlers used may be specific to this group (some car prowlers might risk targeting apartment complexes because of the high number of cars concentrated in a small space) it does show that neighborhoods where the residents look out for each other, locking your doors, and having security signs and cameras can discourage car prowlers from operating in your area.