The Santa Barbara Police Department would like to alert citizens — be aware of suspicious activity stemming from high traffic areas like retail parking lots or beachfront parking areas. The constant turnover and activity aide a thief’s ability to blend in with the environment.
Recently, there has been a rash of vehicle burglaries and theft from vehicles at the Arroyo Burro Beach Park (Hendry’s Beach) as well as other beachfront parking areas and trailheads. Police suspect professional crews are specifically targeting those areas due to high value opportunities.
The vehicles are often accessed while locked with the use of tools to force entry.
Sometimes, thieves steal only a couple of credit cards – returning the wallet or purse to its original location in the vehicle. They rack up thousands of dollars of charges before an unsuspecting victim realizes that they have been taken.
Don’t become a victim. The Santa Barbara Police Department encourages citizens to:
- Lock your car and take your keys with you — numerous stolen cars are taken because people leave their key or key fob in the car and leave it unlocked;
- There’s no such thing of a good hiding spot inside a vehicle. Do not leave purses, backpacks, wallets, phones, or anything else of value in your parked car.
- Do not store holiday gifts in your trunk. After gift shopping, remove those items from your vehicle as soon as possible.
Do your part. Remain aware, help us catch these thieves by reporting any observed suspicious activity by calling 911.