WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Westfield police report 20 thefts from unlocked cars. West Springfield and Longmeadow have also experienced a jump in those crimes.
Even the Eastern Hampden County Hamlet of Holland reported widespread theft from unlocked cars.
Thieves finding easy pickings with an unlocked car steal anything from a few dollars to an expensive computer.
Westfield Police Detective Lt. David Ragazzini told 22News, he’s certain that if 20 thefts were reported, many more occurred.
“That number is low, people may not be reporting for various reasons, embarrassment maybe nothing was taken, and maybe they feel they don’t want to bother with this, so that number is low,” Lt. Ragazzini said.
From the police perspective it’s easier to understand why thieves go looking for unlocked cars than it is to comprehend why victims don’t lock their car doors.
Helen Koenig of Westfield has lived all over the country.
She blames the carelessness on people mistakenly feeling safer in the area’s small cities and towns.
“It’s one of the reasons I really like it,” Koenig said. “It really doesn’t have the feel of a small town but you think it does. In a small town you feel you can trust your neighbors.”
Holland Police Chief Bryan Haugher blames the desperate victims of the heroin and opioid addiction crisis, and advises people to protect themselves and lock their cars and homes.