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Dec 2011
LAPD: Don't leave valuable property in vehicles

The LAPD's auto unit at the Northeast Community station is recommending that resident not leave any valuables in their vehicles-including construction tools or equipment-to prevent their theft.

The advice comes in response to Patch's inquiry about any leads that detectives might have into the December 1 burglary of some $1,000 worth of construction tools from the pickup truck of Floristan Avenue resident Stuart London.

The burglary, which occurred on the night of last week's windstorm, was the third such incident on the 4800 block of Floristan Avenue. A video surveillance camera installed on the block captured images of the robbers and their car as they drove away after stealing electrical equipment and tools from one of London's neighbors, Joel Kelley, in less than a minute.

"Unfortunately, it's one of those crimes that happens in the middle of the night and there are no clues for us," said Jeana Franco, the head of detectives at the Northeast station's auto unit. Images from surveillance cameras are invariably so grainy that "you can't I.D. a suspect and you can't I.D. a license plate," she added.

Usually, the LAPD catches car-borne burglars "in the act," explained Franco, adding that state authorities, under federal pressure, are "letting out all these low-level offenders who are the kind of people who break into cars."

Typically, auto burglars also tend to be drug addicts who are not averse to taking risks to get their next fix, Franco said. "That's why it's important not to put your valuable property in vehicles."

The LAPD has put extra patrol units in Eagle Rock and its vicinity, "specifically looking for burglars of motor vehicles," Franco said.

Meanwhile, Joel Kelley, who recorded images of the burglars stealing goods from his pickup truck, wants readers to know that the robbers were driving a white-colored, two-door Thunderbird with tinted windows.



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