FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) – The Florence County Sheriff's Office is investigating a rash of home and vehicle break-ins over the past several days, and is encouraging residents to take common sense precautions to avoid becoming a target.
A number of recent break-ins have taken place in the Siesta Village, Windsor Forest, Grove Park, and Vintage Place neighborhoods, stated Captain Michael Nunn in an FCSO news release.
Investigators believe the home break-ins are the result of thieves noticing empty boxes for Christmas gifts left on the side of the road for trash collection. "Unfortunately, the empty boxes and containers often provide the 'would be' thief with an inventory of newly acquired items in the home," Nunn stated. "FCSO urges everyone to avoid leaving empty boxes outside the home for thieves to see."
These areas also continue to experience vehicle break-ins, mostly at night, and sometimes in cars that are left unlocked. Items visible from the outside, such as GPS devices, CD players, money and other valuables are an "invitation to thieves to break into the vehicles as the items are easily disposed of on the street," the release states.
The office also continues to receive reports of handguns being stolen out of vehicles, and a high percentage of gun crimes are committed with firearms stolen from vehicle break-ins.
FCSO urges the use of common sense measures to reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of home or vehicle break-ins," the release states. "Crime Watch Organizations are on heightened alert and are available to receive information of suspicious activity. Anyone having information regarding these break-ins or any other suspicious activity is asked to contact FCSO."