ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Police officials across the Capital Region say that many recent crimes are considered crimes of opportunity that can happen anywhere and at any time, but can also be easily avoided. NEWS10 took an exclusive look at the fight against crime.
The Albany Police Department issued an advisory to the public over the weekend. The city of Albany has seen an increase of 65% in car break-ins and personal thefts compared to last year. So, police reminded people to keep their cars locked and their belongings out of sight.
“We’ve had nine vehicles stolen within the last 28 days,” said Albany Police Spokesperson Steve Smith. “Three of those Vehicles were left running, unattended. The others were all left unlocked.”
Troy has seen an increase of 18% over the last five years. Assistant Police Chief Steven Barker said that they have their midnight patrol officers specially tasked with “extra patrols in areas where increased thefts have occurred. We have made several arrests for associated crimes this year.”
The APD advisory reminded people to make sure their cars are always locked and to take their keys with them. Do not leave your spare inside. They are also suggesting that you can hide your belongings under your seat or place them in the trunk. If you need to start your car before travel, they advise getting a remote car starter. Remembering the details of your car can help the police in case it gets stolen.
So, what else can you do to keep your vehicle and your belongings safe? Below is the rest of the list sent by Albany police to help prevent car crimes:
- Park in a well-lit area
- Close all windows and sunroof
- Remove, secure, or hide all valuables
- Consider installing an alarm if you don’t have one
- Never leave your vehicle running unattended
- Even during brief stops, shut car off and lock it
- Consider investing in a remote car starter
- Memorize the make, model, color, and plate number of your vehicle
Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple has concerns that car thefts could result in a more serious crime. “My other worry of course is with the recent gun legislation,” he said. There are signs on some businesses that you can carry, some businesses you can’t carry. It’s very convoluted. Out of a necessity of caution, they’ll come out and they’ll lock their gun in the car. I’m fearful that you’ll have stolen handguns now as well.”