Car Prowlings

  • By Spokane C.O.P.S.
  • 13 Apr, 2016

Easy Steps to Protect Yourself Against Car Prowlers

Car prowlings are an epidemic in Spokane for a myriad of reasons. It seems like nearly all of us at some point has either been a victim of car prowling or knows someone who was, and many Spokane residents are understandably concerned about this trend. While law enforcement officers are doing all they can to combat this, there are number of steps you can take to help protect your car against prowlers.

Park in a well-lit area . Thieves are less likely to break into a car if they know they can be seen. Avoid parking in dark areas as much as possible. If you park outside your house, invest in a good lighting system to keep the area lit at night.

Park in a public area . When you have the choice between different areas, pick a spot closest to a busy road or near a lot of people. The goal of thieves is to not be noticed, so they aren’t as likely to target a car where others can see them.

Take all valuables inside . We’re always in a hurry, and the temptation can be to leave cell phones, wallets, mp3 players, etc., in the car. All this does is attract thieves. Most thieves are opportunists, looking for an easy steal. Don’t give them that opportunity! If there is nothing of value in your car, thieves are more likely to move on to someone else. And remember, your concern isn’t as much what IS valuable, as what COULD BE valuable to a thief -  you  might know that the laptop case or gym bag in your car are empty, but a thief doesn’t.

Get a car alarm installed.  Car alarms are relatively inexpensive, and they can be a deterrent in thwarting criminals. Alarms that have the blinking red light on the dash are preferred since a thief can see the car has an alarm before breaking in, but even an alarm without that warning is still helpful.

Make sure you lock your doors . Many thieves will walk past a line of cars, and subtly pull on each door handle until they find an unlocked door. Those thieves aren’t looking at the type of car of what might be inside, they’re just looking for an unlocked door that will make their job easier. So get in the habit of always locking your car, even if you are just stepping away for a short time.

Keep your garage door opener with you , especially if your car is in your driveway. Thieves will often break in a car in front of a house where a garage door opener is visible. They’re hoping it will open the garage door right in front of them and give them access to your house.

Remember, not only do car break-ins deprive you of your belongings, but you put yourself at risk for identity theft if you are keeping your wallet or any type of i.d. in your car. While you can’t stop car break-ins entirely, following the steps above will help minimize your chances of being broken into.

And remember, if you do find your car broken into, call Crime Check immediately at 509-456-2233. Request to have your car lifted for prints, and Crime Check will put your local C.O.P.S. shop in touch with you to make that happen.


For more crime prevention and safety information, follow us on Facebook , Twitter , Pinterest , or LinkedIn .

Want to make Spokane a safer place? Volunteer at your local C.O.P.S. shop with one of our crime prevention programs , from lifting fingerprints off of vehicles to catch car prowlers to organizing a block watch for your neighborhood.

Spokane C.O.P.S.

By Spokane C.O.P.S. 21 Sep, 2016
You don't need to be a police officer to play a role in reducing crime in Spokane! Everyday people are stepping up to make their community safer-here's our favorite stories of citizens taking action to make our city safer.
By Spokane C.O.P.S. 07 Sep, 2016

Over 7,000 cases of personal property theft have been recorded so far this year (up 4.5% from this time last year). In many of these cases, Spokane police officers are able to recover the stolen property...with no way of identifying the owner. When they can’t find the owner, the items eventually go to auction to free up much needed space in the police evidence facility. This raises an important question-if your property is stolen and recovered by police, would you be able to prove it’s yours?

That’s where Operation ID comes into play. The idea is to mark your valuable possessions with an identifying number (like your driver’s license number). Engraving a number helps deter theft since it’s harder to sell an ID-ed item to a pawn shop. If the item is stolen, the identifying number helps you prove ownership of the item to the police.

Operation ID also involves creating an inventory of the make and model of all ID-ed items, which you then put in a secure place. In the event of theft, fire damage, or other incident where you need to make a claim to your insurance company for item replacement, your information is ready for the insurance company.

Operation ID is a free service that only takes a few minutes. Bring your valuables to your local C.O.P.S. shop to borrow an engraver and pick up an inventory log.

Another property identification program is SpokaneBikeID.org , a city wide bike registration database. The information uploaded during registration is used by police to connect a recovered bike to its rightful owner. You can bring your bike by your local C.O.P.S. shop and our volunteers will register it for you (and you can get a free child’s helmet while supplies last).

For more crime prevention information, check out our Facebook , Twitter , Linkedin , and Pinterest .
By Spokane C.O.P.S. 05 Sep, 2016

Here are the top news stories about SPD, Spokane crime rates, significant arrests, and more.

By Spokane C.O.P.S. 31 Aug, 2016
The Sex Offender Registry is a tool allowing citizens to access information on registered sex offenders. Here’s a breakdown on what you need to know.
By Spokane C.O.P.S. 24 Aug, 2016
Getting a social media account hacked is a stressful experience, with potential harms of reputation damaging information posted, identifying information collected, and the logistics of undoing the damage. While no social media account is 100% impenetrable, there are easy steps to take to drastically reduce your risk of your Twitter account being hacked.
By Spokane C.O.P.S. 24 Aug, 2016
Early September is an interesting time of year, showing the full range of human emotions. Children everywhere enter a state of depression as they begin getting their school materials ready, while simultaneously most parents burst out singing the old classic, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” at the thought of getting the kids out of the house again. At least that’s how it was in my family growing up.

But there is one thing everyone can agree on: staying safe. And we here at Spokane C.O.P.S. are, as usual, committed to your safety. So we’ve created a list of a few things that you can do to help keep your kids safe as they head back to school.
By Spokane C.O.P.S. 21 Aug, 2016

Here are the top news stories about SPD, Spokane crime rates, significant arrests, and more.

By Spokane C.O.P.S. 17 Aug, 2016
NNO 2016 was a blast with 73 registered parties and 31 new parties! We are proud of our citizens coming together with their neighbors to take a stand against crime, build relationships with each other and the police, and play a role in making Spokane a safer and better community. Below are some of the highlights from this great event.
By Spokane C.O.P.S. 14 Aug, 2016

Here are the top news stories about SPD, Spokane crime rates, significant arrests, and more.

By Spokane C.O.P.S. 10 Aug, 2016
Neighbors who are connected together become powerful watchdogs at preventing crime. They can more easily identify suspicious people, can assist each other with tasks like checking in on homes while the owners are on vacation, and more. Creating strong neighborhood connections is a simple way to proactively prevent crime in your community. Check out these ideas to bring your neighbors back together to build those powerful crime preventing relationships (and for ideas on actionable crime prevention ideas, check out our blog post here ).
More Posts
Share by: