Larcenies from vehicles and larcenies of motor vehicle parts are the most commonly reported property offenses in the City of Manassas. Citizen reports of larcenies from vehicles resulted in 29 calls for service for the City of Manassas Police Department since Jan. 1, 2013. Despite these statistics, it is one of the easiest crimes to prevent if you follow these simple tips:
- Thieves have a tendency to canvass neighborhoods where they look for valuables through the glass and check for unlocked doors. They also stake out parking lots where they watch drivers place bags and other items in their trunks before walking away. Always stow items completely out of sight before arriving at your destination. Keep in mind that items that might not seem valuable to you, such as papers, spare change or small electronics, could be worth stealing to a criminal.
- To help reduce the risk of becoming a victim of theft, residents are strongly encouraged to close car windows and lock doors at all times when leaving vehicles unattended, regardless of where you are parked - outside your home or in public. If you use a remote key to lock your vehicle, make sure that all the doors did lock before walking away.
- Leave exterior lights on overnight to illuminate driveways and other parking areas in front of your home. When parking in public garages or lots, or somewhere outside of your neighborhood, park your vehicle in a well-lit populated area, or in a lot with an attendant on duty who can help prevent a break-in. Avoid parking where your own vehicle could become concealed by such things as larger vehicles, dumpsters, shrubbery and fences.
- Take inventory of the valuables you own. Include serial numbers, photographs, other identifying information and their value, and store it in a secure place outside of the home such as a safe-deposit box.
- Consider installing a car alarm system, which is another good preventative measure. If you do have one installed, be sure to respond to the alarm quickly to prevent any disturbance.
Report ALL suspicious activity to Police. If your neighborhood does not have an active Neighborhood Watch in place, start one by calling 703-257-8092.