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Police caution public after string of car break-ins near Monon Trail

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A rash of car break-ins Friday on Indy’s north side included areas like Broad Ripple and Meridian Hills.

Police don’t know who’s been committing the crimes, but they’re hoping others learn from the incidents.

Two cars were burglarized in a parking lot at 75th Street and Westfield Boulevard, near the Monon Trail Friday.

While the crime is random, police say we can learn a lesson from what the incidents have in common.

“We live about five minutes north and it’s really nice for me to be able to go on the Monon a lot,” Indianapolis resident Alexander McKinney said.

But McKinney hesitates at the thought of leaving a car alone near the trail.

The cars are long gone, as are the thieves, but evidence of multiple vehicle break-ins remains.

“It’s such a quick crime to do and get away with no one seeing you,” IMPD North District Commander Chris Bailey explained. “It takes just mere seconds to smash a window and grab whatever they can see.”

If the thieves can see something even remotely valuable, Bailey said you’re much more likely to have a window smashed.

“The biggest reason why you’re going to be a target of this is because you’ve left something in the open,” he said.

In the two crimes Friday, one person left a purse in plain sight on her backseat and the other left a pair of Beats headphones in the open.

Bailey said that’s exactly what not to do.

“If you’re bringing a purse, try leaving that at home or locking it in the trunk at a minimum,” he said.

Police know these crimes occur in the area and try to prevent them with extra foot and bike patrols.

“Our bike unit spends a lot of time on the trails,” Bailey said.

But with countless parking spots and 30 miles of Monon Trail in IMPD’s North District alone, it’s going to take public involvement to prevent crime.

“Be aware of your surroundings,” Bailey advised. “As you get out of your car, if you see anything that doesn’t look right or feel right, pick up the phone and call 911.”

There is not a surveillance camera at the Monon parking lot where the crimes happened.

Right now police don’t believe the frequency of the crimes justifies that cost, but installing a camera has been discussed.

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