Monday, June 6, 2016

Rash of car prowls on Education Hill - lock your car doors!

Becky Range, RPD

For the last few weeks, we've seen a lot of car prowls.  From May 23 to May 29, Redmond Police received 26 reports of car prowls in the Education Hill Police District alone. We know that many of you are feeling frustrated and unsettled. Please know that we are doing everything we can to protect your property and have already adjusted patrols. We also have one specific Investigations unit devoted solely to property crimes. In the last few weeks, we also reallocated an officer to serve as a property crime detective to help with caseloads. 

We are investigating each of these prowls seriously and are analyzing the information in an effort to make connections or find common trends. We do know this…if a criminal can easily enter multiple cars, in a short amount of time, that is exactly where they will gravitate. 

We Need You To: 
• Remove Everything from Your Car. Yes, we mean everything. Phone chargers, pocket change, sunglasses, bags, etc. Thieves will take anything, even bags of trash…thinking it could be something of value. 

• Lock Your Car.

-  19 out of these 26 cars were UNLOCKED or showed no signs of forced entry or vehicle damage. Read More>>
-  Most of these were sometime during the night. 

-  Some residents believe that leaving a car unlocked is better than paying for a smashed window. We know that a car prowler is more likely to walk away from an unlocked car, than to smash a window. Lock up. 

• Report all suspicious behavior to 911 immediately and encourage your neighbors to do the same. Get to know your neighbors. Recognize what they drive. Ask them if they have workers that come and go. This can help you spot suspicious activity, which could be: 

-   Someone going door-to-door without a good reason to be in your neighborhood, especially if they knock on doors, but do not have the correct address or any names of actual residents. 

-   An unknown vehicle driving slowly on your street, as if they are looking at houses and do not have a reason to be there. 

-   Someone walking around several cars and peeking into the windows, or trying door handles of multiple cars. 

-  Reach out and support your block watch captain. Brainstorm ideas on how your street/block can work together. Remind each other to put garage doors down. Split up days to just walk your street and look out for each other. 

-   If you aren’t sure if you have a block watch captain, email Lt. Neorr at for help. 

We often hear a sentiment of “we’ve never had to lock our cars in Redmond before, things are so different now.” We must move past that mindset. Redmond still has an incredibly low overall crime rate. But, our larceny theft crime rate, which includes car prowls, is slightly higher than state average – Redmond is 25.9% and Washington State is 23.3%. We must change our habits and be more proactive about safeguarding our property. 

RPD can’t do this alone. There are many more of you…than there are of us!

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