SAVANNAH, Ga (WSAV) – Car break-ins across Savannah’s Southside are on the rise — with more than a dozen in the past week alone.
Car break-ins are nothing new to Southside neighbors who see more than 300 each year.This year, they’re on track to surpass that, before summer is over.
“It’s a hot topic right now because we are getting hit hard and it’s mainly because people are leaving their cars unlocked,” says Southside precinct crime prevention officer Thomas Norris.
Metro police report more than 220 car break-ins in the area since the start of the year.
“So what we’ve seen is that they’ll hit one neighborhood in one night, three, four cars will get hit and the next night nothing,” officer Norris adds.
That’s already 100 more than what was seen on the Southside last year.
In fact, these break-ins have increased by more than 80%.
We reached out to WSAV crime expert and retired SCMPD Major Gerry Long about the trend.
“Vehicle break ins have a tendency to increase during the summer just simple because it’s people are more mobile,” says Long.
Long lives on the Southside. She echoes Metro police officers saying the greatest way to prevent the crime is not making it easy for criminals.
“The best deterrent or the best aid in solving a crime is that if you see somebody that is walking down your street or in your neighborhood that you’re not familiar with call and have them checked out,” Long adds.
Metro police have made several arrests in these cases after calls from neighbors just like that.
“These arrests were made and then we noticed a decrease in that certain area where they were caught,” says the CPO.
Police numbers show these crimes on the Southside are the largest increase in thefts than any other part of town.
“They’re comfortable where they are at, this is the Southside, but again, please lock your cars,” Officer Norris says.
Officer Norris adds that, in many of these theft cases, change and electronics were stolen. In a few cases, guns left in the glove compartments were taken.