A suspect is in custody after a series of break-ins at an apartment complex in Meridian. Around 10 o'clock Thursday night is when Meridian police were called to Willow Ridge Apartments.
'A suspicious individual was spotted there.'
According to Lieutenant Dean Harper, who is head of the detective unit for MPD, officers virtually caught the suspect in the act.
'They found an individual there in the parking lot; he had some stolen property in his possession that came out of one of the vehicles in the parking lot. They started checking some other vehicles and checking with the residents who lived there in the apartment complex. So far, we've only found one vehicle that a victim is willing to pursue charges,' says Lt. Harper.
Although only one victim is actually pursuing charges, there are reports from residents that almost a dozen vehicles were burglarized. In some cases, nothing was stolen. From the suspect officers recovered stolen cell phones and at least one GPS that was in his possession.
'When they break into these cars, they're generally finding stuff that they can just grab and run with. They're not prying out radios. They're stealing telephones, iPods and cash if they're any laying around,' says Harper. He also says that people who break into vehicles often search for guns that are hidden inside or credit cards.
'The trend that we see now is people go and work neighborhoods and they try door handles. If they find one unlocked they go in the car, but if it's locked they go on to the next one.'
As the official kickoff of the holiday season nears, Lt. Harper says vehicles will become even more of a prime target for thieves. With that in mind, he reminds motorists to never leave valuables out in plain sight in vehicles and if there are valuables inside the vehicle, keep it locked.