Two cars were stolen from an Isla Vista driveway when an intruder reportedly entered the unlocked door of an apartment to steal the keys on Sunday morning.
The owners of the vehicles reported that a 1996 Honda Civic and a 2001 Volkswagen Jetta were stolen from their residence on the 6500 block of Del Playa Drive between 3:30 and 6:30 a.m. According to the police report, an intruder reportedly stole three sets of car keys, though the third car was not stolen.
The apartment’s four residents found the keys missing from a holder by the front door, where they were kept to be accessible for moving cars, I.V. Foot Patrol Sgt. Rob Wright said. The residents did not report any unusual activity other than the burglary that night and told police they did not have reason to believe they had been targeted.
“The stolen cars are entered into a nationwide system with the license plate numbers,” Wright said. “The best way to prevent this from happening is to keep your doors locked and secure your residences.”
Since the beginning of February, there have been six unrelated car burglaries, three of which occurred after burglars threw a rock through a passenger window.
Last Saturday, the owner of a car parked in the Tropicana Gardens parking lot found a case of CDs missing. According to the police report, a large rock was used to break into the car. The police report also stated that the victim “felt as though she had been targeted” because her car was the only one burglarized.
Such burglaries are not uncommon in I.V., but most occur at random, Sheriff’s Dept. Lt. Jim Dollar said.
It’s not a common occurrence, but we do get quite a few burglaries out there in Isla Vista,” Dollar said.
In four of the February auto burglary cases, items in the vehicle were left in view, a practice Dollar said increases the incidence of burglary.
“If someone breaks in, they want to steal something. If you don’t have anything out in the open, the chance of having something stolen is a lot less,” he said.