Car break-ins on the rise in Lenexa

Car break-ins on the rise in Lenexa
Posted on 03/15/2019

The Lenexa Police Department has seen a recent uptick in car break-ins around the city, especially at fitness centers, public parks and daycares. The most common items stolen in these burglaries are women’s purses, which includes cash, credit cards and checks. These are crimes of opportunity, taking place when a burglar sees valuable items inside the passenger compartment of a car.

We have found that these burglaries occur in a matter of seconds, with the burglar usually smashing a car window and reaching in to take the items. These burglars do not appear deterred by daylight, since most are occurring during the day, nor by the presence of others since these parking lots usually have people coming and going.

We recommend taking purses and wallets with you and never leaving them behind in the passenger compartment of your car. Alternatively, these items can be locked in the trunk of your car if you can’t take them with you. If stowing valuables in your trunk, we recommend doing that in advance of arriving at your destination since burglars could be watching for people putting valuables in the trunk.

Remember, these crimes are occurring when a burglar sees something they want in your car. Simply putting the item on the floorboard, or hiding with a jacket may not be enough to conceal the item from passersby. 

In these specific crimes (break-ins at fitness centers, public parks, daycares, etc.), we have found the suspects to be from outside of the Kansas City metro area. The suspects are usually driving rental vehicles with out-of-state license plates. They usually operate in pairs or small groups, with one person driving around a parking lot and another on foot, peering inside vehicles for items to steal. Once items are stolen, suspects typically go immediately to area retailers to purchase items with the stolen credit cards and checks.

Do your part to help prevent these crimes by not leaving valuable items such as purse and wallets inside your car. Also, report suspicious activity immediately to 911. Thank you for helping us fight crime in Lenexa!  

Published March 15, 2019