In the recent months, the Elgin Police Department has seen an uptick in burglaries, especially to motor vehicles. While the overall crime numbers show crime is still relatively low, burglaries are up and the police department is working to stem the tide.
An estimated 70% of the motor vehicle burglaries are committed on unlocked vehicles. The items stolen from inside the vehicles ranges from loose change all the way to expensive laptops or other electronic items. The first step to combating the rise in these burglaries is for residents to lock their car doors. Chief Swoboda’s message is simple, “If you like it, lock it.” While a lock will not prevent all crimes from occurring it is usually a solid deterrent to most would be criminals.
The second step to help curb burglaries is citizen awareness and involvement. Residents are encouraged to call the police to report suspicious persons. If a homeowner sees someone looking in cars or they appear to not belong near a car or property, call the non-emergency police number and report it. An officer will respond and check the area. “If every resident helps keep an eye on their neighborhood the end result will be less crime and a better quality of life for everyone” Swoboda stated.
An additional step residents can make toward keeping burglaries and other crimes in check is to join their neighborhood groups and become involved in the activities happening on their block. If everyone gets to know their neighbors, at least on the greeting level, strangers will be more noticeable.
Residents can reach the police at the non-emergency number 847-289-2700; through texting 847411 and including ELGINPD in the beginning of the text along with the message and/or tip information; or through the anonymous crime line 847-695-4195.