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Renton Police Catch Two Car Prowlers Responsible for Multiple Felonies

June 1, 2009

For more information contact:

Chad Karlewicz, Commander, Renton Police Department 425-430-7640
Preeti Shridhar, Communications Director 425-430-6569

Exceptional Surveillance by Special Operations Officers helps recover property and leads to arrests

Renton WA:  Two vehicle prowlers were arrested last week when they were caught trying to steal laptops and GPS systems from parked vehicles. Officers from the Special Operations Division of the Renton Police Department followed the suspects during 16 hours of surveillance and over a two day period. The suspects, who have committed several similar felonies in Renton, and other cities including Bellevue and Tukwila, were arrested for multiple felonies. 

“Thanks to our proactive efforts and the tenacity of our police officers we were able to track these suspects, who are responsible for several crimes in Renton and other cities,” said Mayor Denis Law.  “We will continue to take firm measures to reduce crime in our city and utilize creative and innovative enforcement strategies to keep our neighborhoods safe.”

Car burglaries are on the rise in our region, and many of these are crimes of opportunity that can be prevented. There are a number of things drivers can do to deter break-ins. By taking the following easy steps you can make sure that your car isn't the next target.

  • Lock your car doors. This is as simple as it sounds, but it is surprising how much is stolen from cars with unlocked doors. Of course, locked doors don't do much good if you leave the windows down, so roll up the windows.
  • Remove GPS systems from the dashboard. Vehicle prowlers will break in to steal GPS systems and then sell them at pawn shops or online. Also remove laptops, IPods, IPod accessories, CD’s, cell phones, or other electronic devices and take them with you or place them out of sight.
  • Don't leave anything of value in the car. The purse or golf clubs that are visible through the window make an inviting target. If you have to leave items in the car, put them out of sight in the trunk. The duffle bag with dirty gym clothes might not be of significant value to you. But a thief who doesn't know what is inside might target your car hoping to find checkbooks, credit cards, palm pilots or other items. Always take these personal items into your home when you park for the evening.
  • Use safety features if you have them. Examples of these features include activating your car alarm, removing stereo faceplates and putting steering wheel locking devices in place.
  • Park in a well-lit area that is visible to others. Avoid parking near dumpsters, woods, large vans or trucks, or anything else that limits your visibility
  • Other measures. If you are a victim, notify the police and make a report. Notify neighbors, neighborhood groups such as Neighborhood Watch or the business or apartment management. Report suspicious or criminal behavior.

For emergencies, please call 9-1-1. To report a non-emergency crime through Renton's online police reporting system, visit rentonwa.gov.