Erie County Sheriff reminds people to lock cars, take keys out

Grand Island

FILE: Cars are parked in an auto dealer lot Wednesday, April 15, 2020, in Green Park, Mo. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

GRAND ISLAND, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Erie County Sheriff’s Office wants people to lock their cars and stop leaving the keys inside.

Of the ten stolen vehicles reported in Grand Island this year, eight already had the keys in the car when they were taken.

People have been stealing personal belongings from vehicles on the island, too, the Sheriff’s Office says. The effort is minimal, though.

“The thieves are not breaking windows or popping locks. Instead, they are simply pulling the door handle, and if the door opens, the criminals are going in,” Sheriff Tim Howard said.

These larcenies have been reported throughout the town.

On April 10, the Sheriff’s Office arrested two minors and charged them with felony counts of grand larceny, criminal mischief, criminal possession of stolen property and unauthorized use of a vehicle.

The arrests came after a vehicle was reported stolen the day before.

“Unfortunately, people are leaving valuables and keys in the car,” Sheriff Howard said. “Any time items are left in plain view, nefarious individuals are going to take the opportunity to commit a crime.”

Evan Anstey is a digital content producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

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