CLEARWATER, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) – Residents and visitors alike are being asked by local police to help curb crimes of opportunity by increasing awareness.
Clearwater Police are investigating multiple recent incidents where suspects have smashed car windows and grabbed purses, wallets and other items of value from inside the vehicles. Criminals then use the credit cards at nearby stores before owners realize they are gone or able to be canceled.
On Monday, multiple vehicles were targeted at the Eddie C. Moore Softball Complex in the 2900 block of Drew Street. On Wednesday, similar crimes occurred at the Crest Lake Dog Park and Glen Oaks Park.
After the burglaries, a woman was seen at local drug stores using the stolen credit cards. She is a white female, about 35 years old, 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs 130 pounds. She has dark hair and wears medical scrubs type clothing. A white SUV is also being sought in connection with the crimes.
Clearwater Police remind those who are visiting parks, athletic fields, gyms and other similar places to not leave purses and other valuables in plain view inside your car. You should put them in your trunk, preferably before getting to your location.
“These are crimes of opportunity that take just seconds to occur,” said Lt. Michael Walek. “If residents can take the extra time and plan ahead and not leave valuables where they can be seen, it will help keep them from becoming crime victims.”
Some of the guns recovered from recent shooting incidents have been from unlocked vehicle burglaries as well. Detectives urge anyone who owns a gun to never leave it in your vehicle, especially if it’s unlocked.
Anyone with information on these incidents should call Clearwater Police at 727-562-4242.