Entering auto thieves hit county and city again

ALBANY, Ga. -- Entering auto crimes peppered crime reports during the past two days as criminals were involved in almost two dozen cases of taking items from parked cars.

The Albany Police Department Wednesday reports show 14 entering auto burglaries and the Dougherty County Police Department reported six entering auto and related crimes such as a residential burglary on its Wednesday report.

Particularly hit by the crimes were the 2600 block of Erica Court in the city and the Hidden Lakes Drive area in the county.

"We have increased patrols in the area," said Dougherty County Police Department Assistant Chief C.J. Battle. "Right now we don't know who they are. We are looking at everything out there. They could be juveniles."

Considering that thieves stole a gun from a vehicle on the 4800 block of Grandview Drive, at least one resident in the area suspected the thieves might be gang members.

Steve McGowan said the Sunday murder of a gang member at the Shackelford Shopping Center probably by other gang members may have set the stage for the thefts.

"They stole a gun," McGowan said. "They didn't take anything else but a surveyor's tool that looked like it had a gun sight on it. There is no doubt they were looking for guns."

According to the county police reports, a wallet and an iPod were also taken from one of the vehicles. One neighbor, who had the driver's side window of his vehicle smashed in by the thieves and lost the surveyor's tool, said the thefts could be a gang initiation.

"Surprisingly they didn't touch my cordless drill, or the tools in the tool box," Ben Barrow said. "I only had one thing missing."

Apparently, a stolen golf cart was used to drive the thieves from one residence to another. The cart was recovered.

"We were able to see golf cart tracks from one yard to another," Battle said. "As I said right now we don't know much but we are actively investigating."

Law enforcement personnel have been encouraging residents to lock their vehicle doors for years. Police also said nothing of value, especially guns, should be stored in the vehicles.

"Entering auto thefts send our larceny statistics way up," said Phyllis Banks Albany police spokeswoman. "Never leave a gun in your vehicle and always lock the doors."


Sister_Ruby 2 years, 10 months ago

I have a gun and I will show them how it works.


chinaberry25 2 years, 10 months ago

Who in their right mind would leave a gun in a car. This is high rent district, why not in your 4 car garage?


waltspecht 2 years, 10 months ago

Anyone smart enough to have a gun safe installed in the vehicle. Where else are you going to leave it if you have to visit the courthouse?


VSU 2 years, 10 months ago

But this was at a residence...like maybe take the gun out of your vehicle when you are home?


Pastor 2 years, 10 months ago

People are so quick to say its gang related. Wait on the completion of the investigation and then make a judgement on the facts. A few random acts by a two or three reckless individuals should not put this much fear into the community. These young guys are not real gang members. They try to identify with or imitate the actions of real gang members. They go home to their mothers at night. They are an unaccepted subculture of misguided youth looking for father figures and identification. Look at the crime statistics. Most crimes are done in the after school hours. Unfortunately their deviant clubs are labeled as gangs because one or two choose to fight or do miscellaneous crimes. Is it wrong? Yes. Is it every member? No. Please don't let the actions of a few individuals put you in fear.


bigbob 2 years, 10 months ago

More it makes me feel better knowing there is only 2 or 3 reckless individuals in Albany commiting all these crimes. Come on pastor heard you must be joking right?


Pastor 2 years, 10 months ago

In the particular case of the break-in's it was more or less a few individuals. Not a whole gang if it was at all so-called alleged gang members. They could possibly be old drunk men from Stonebridge Country Club. You nor I were there. It is all an assumption. I assume the investigation and arrest will be published here on the Herald. My point was don't assume automatically its a gang and don't let the events put you in fear. That is all. I want to encourage and not add fuel to the fire. Pastor Heard is a great guy but I am not Pastor Heard.


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