Police investigating string of car burglaries, offer prevention tips to residents

Published 9:00 am Wednesday, September 21, 2016

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Over the weekend, local law enforcement agencies began investigating a string of car burglaries and are recommending residents take some simple precautions to deter thieves.
On Saturday morning, officers with the Carter County Sheriff’s Office and Elizabethton Police Department began receiving reports from several residents in the Milligan and Happy Valley communities that items had been stolen from their vehicles during the previous night.
A total of nine reports were filed regarding the thefts — eight with the Carter County Sheriff’s Office and one with the Elizabethton Police Department. The thefts were reported on Milligan Highway, Max Jett Road, Stanmoore Drive, Country Garden Road and Old Lewis Road.
Some residents reported items had been stolen from their vehicles while others said nothing was missing, but their vehicles had been ransacked.
The Carter County Sheriff’s Office is providing some tips for residents to follow to deter potential thieves.
“The number one thing people aren’t doing is locking their cars,” said CCSO Lt. Mike Fraley, who serves as the department’s Public Information Officer. “I know it sounds trivial, but it’s important.
“We don’t live in a time where we have the luxury to leave our cars unlocked and our windows down anymore,” he added.
Another simple step that will deter potential thieves, Fraley said, is for residents to ensure their outdoor lighting is working properly. If no outdoor lighting is present, Fraley recommends installing some form of outdoor lighting, particularly in parking areas.
Fraley also asked residents to report any suspicious activity they see.
“If you see something suspicious, call and make a report on it,” he said.
Residents wishing to report suspicious activity can call 911 to request to speak to an officer.
Anyone who has any information about the recent burglaries can also make an anonymous tip with the Carter County Sheriff’s Office through the Sheriff’s Office website at www.sheriff.cc/contacts/crime-tip/ or with the Elizabethton Police Department by calling the Crime Stoppers Tips Line at (423) 542-7574.

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